Now that Bellator has returned to action, the promotion is ready to prove they can be one of the top promotions in all of MMA. Could a current boxer end up helping them with that?
Recently, Dereck Chisora has made it known that he is looking to involve himself with the world of MMA. This is during a time in which he is waiting to face former cruiserweight champion Oleksandr Usyk. Chisora (32-9) would be very interested in joining Bellator, even saying that the promotion has reached out to him for a potential fight.
“I’ve been [MMA] training for two and half years at London Shootfighters in Wembley with Alex Demetriades,” Chisora would end up saying. “I can do the MMA while I wait for the Usyk fight. It will be doing both at the same time.”
Chisora is friends with current Bellator fighter Michael “Venom” Page. The promotion has had sports stars outside of MMA enter the Bellator cage; Bobby Lashley, Jake Hager, Matt Mitrione, etc. Would Scott Coker entertain the idea of bringing in Chisora?
“There is dialogue,” Coker ended up telling Sky Sports. “We’d love to have him. If he has time in his schedule to compete in MMA, we’d love to put him in there and test him out. He has so many boxing fights but it is still a different experience to fight with little gloves, and in a cage would be an adjustment. I picture a fun opponent for him to compete with. We haven’t spoken about opponents or timing. It comes down to when he is available.
“Let’s get it on!”
A former British, Commonwealth and European Heavyweight Champion, Chisora is on a three-fight win streak. Losing to Dillian Whyte for the second time, “Del Boy” has rebounded with two wins via knockout. His last fight was a TKO-win over David Price in October. Originally set to clash with Usyk on May 23, the bout was postponed due to the coronavirus. There is no date set for the bout to take place.
Coker, formerly of Strikeforce, is getting ready to produce a fight for former rugby player James Haskell. A fight for Chisora, a born fighter, is something he can get behind. Willing to give him a shot, Coker respects Chisora’s desire.
“I love when someone who comes from a different sport really puts the time in to practice martial arts,” Coker went on to say. “When you go to a gym like Shootfighters in London, it means you are serious. This isn’t a gimmick.”
“I love when athletes at the highest level come in because they realize this is a tough sport that takes a lot of dedication and time. But they have such great athletic ability that they can make that crossover.”
Bellator is set to return to action on July 24 from inside the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, CT. The main event of Bellator 242 will be Sergio Pettis v. Ricky Bandejas.