Bellator Signs Former Champion Minakov
With Bellator’s Heavyweight World Grand Prix nearing a conclusion later this year, the man who last held that title is returning to the Bellator cage.
First reported by ESPN, former Bellator heavyweight champion Vitaly Minakov has signed a new deal with the Viacom owned promotion, and is expected to have a fight in the near future and a title shot against the Grand Prix winner.
Four fighters remain in the tournament as Chael Sonnen will take on Fedor Emelianenko and Matt Mitrione will face light heavyweight champion Ryan Bader in the semi-finals.
Minakov was stripped of the title in May 2016 due to deciding to stay with Fight Nights Global over Bellator in 2014, following a Bellator 115 win over Chieck Kongo.
While the decision was made by Coker, Minakov’s fight fights inside the Bellator cage was under the reign of Bjorn Rebney, he currently stands undefeated at 21-0.
Initial Report: ESPN