Making the best of a terrible situation, Bellator President Scott Coker is looking to start May off with a bang.
It was announced that Gegard Mousasi will face Welterweight Champion Douglas Lima for the vacant Bellator Middlweight Champion on May 9. As of now, that event is called Bellator 243 and it will take place inside the SAP Center in San Jose, California.
Since we can’t have a cross-promotional superfight I’ll give you another.
— Scott Coker (@ScottCoker) February 11, 2020
Following an initial post by Ariel Helwani teasing a Kamaru Usman-Lima bout, Coker stated that another Lima fight would be announced, knowing that bout wouldn’t get made. He did say, however, that Bellator is ready to make it happen whenever.
The news comes a day after Rafael Lovato Jr. had to relinquish the Middleweight Title due to cavernoma. His MMA career has officially been put on hold.
For Mousasi (46-7-2), this is a chance to regain his title. Joining Bellator in 2017, Mousasi beat Rafael Carvalho for the Middleweight Title at Bellator 200 in 2018. He lost the title to Lovato Jr. at Bellator 223 in June. The 34-year-old former DREAM and Cage Warriors Middleweight Champion rebounded with a split decision win over Lyoto Machida in September at Bellator 228.
This will be Lima’s first fight since beating Rory MacDonald in the Welterweight Grand Prix back at Bellator 232 in October. This will also be his first legitimate middleweight bout since 2010, when he beat Cortez Coleman via split decision at SportFight X-1: Beatdown. A true homegrown talent, Lima signed a multi-year, multi-fight extension with the company yesterday.
Talks were ongoing with Lima and Mousasi for a middleweight bout following the initial Lovato announcement. Now, Lima will look to be the third man in Bellator to currently hold two titles, while Mousasi will be looking for his second crack as champion for Bellator.
The fight is added to a Bellator card that includes Ryan Bader defending his Light Heavyweight Title against Vadim Nemkov.