Bellator made an interesting move in their welterweight division, announcing the signing of former UFC fighter, former porn actor and former inmate War Machine Thursday.
The former Jon Koppenhaver (12-4) has been one of the sport's more infamous figures over the past few years, making a splash on the sixth season of The Ultimate Fighter. After a bloody Fight Of The Night win over Jared Rollins at the TUF 6 Finale, Machine was cut after a submission loss to Yoshiyuki Yoshida at UFC 84, mainly due to comments he made about the late Evan Tanner.
It's been a strange few years for the 30-year-old Machine.
- He legally changed his name to War Machine because a professional wrestler was using it as a nickname and the organization threatened legal action if he used it as well, claiming they had the trademark on it.
- He signed a deal with Bellator in 2009, but was released before making his debut after he made some controversial comments about President Barack Obama on MySpace. (Yes, there was a social network before Facebook that people actually used.)
- He announced that he was shooting his first porn scene in the fall of 2009. In December of that year, a warrant was issued for his arrest following an incident at a porn actress' birthday party where he got into an altercation with several party goers.
- He was arrested in both February and March 2010 for two incidents involving physical altercations in California bars. As a result, he was later sentenced for one year in jail for a felony assault conviction and was released this past July.
Something lost completely along the way during this insane stretch is that Machine picked up five straight wins on the regional scene and had finishes in all of them. Before going into jail, Machine had lost two of three but is already on the winning track following a November TKO win over fellow UFC and Bellator alum Roger Huerta.
No date was announced for Machine's debut, nor whether he has a slot in their Season 6 welterweight tournament. Here's hoping his next four years are a lot more kind than his last four.