Darrion Caldwell is a lot of things: a former Bellator champion, a submission-record holder, and an NCAA Division I Champion. He is also one of few, if not the only, mixed martial artist with a Wikipedia entry dedicated to his “celebratory backflip incidents.”
The first incident occurred in the closing seconds of his 2009 NCAA championship match against Brent Metcalf. Caldwell attempted an early celebratory handspring and backflip. Metcalf rushed Caldwell mid-backflip and shoved him through the air. In 2015, Caldwell performed a backflip off the cage after beating Shawn Bunch at Bellator 143 and landed on a camerawoman in the process.
Bloody Elbow caught up with Caldwell (13-3) ahead of his fight with Ádám Borics (14-0) at Bellator 238.
When asked about the Wikipedia category, Caldwell immediately bust into laughter.
“Why do you want to talk about my backflips, bro?” he asked. “I’m trying to be a stunt double... I’m pretty athletic and pretty durable. I know I can make a check being a stunt double.”
He assured the backflips were going nowhere anytime soon: “Not at all. I’m gonna keep sticking to it...”
Caldwell also reacted to Bellator President Scott Coker’s disappointment with Patricio Freire choosing not to fight Caldwell in the opening round of the Bellator Featherweight Grand Prix.
“I think it goes to show that he doesn’t really want to fight me. If I had the choice, I’d pick the smallest guy. The one that’s coming up. He knows the type of threats he’d get involved in if he fights me. Honestly, it’s pretty dope that Scott wants us to fight. I think that’s a fight that is going to happen, just not on “Pitbull”’s terms. If he has the choice, he’s not fighting that fight. We’ll give him no choice,” Caldwell assured. “I’ll see him in the finals.”
Bellator 238 takes place on Saturday, Jan. 25. The event is headlined by a women’s featherweight title fight between Julia Budd and the debuting Cris Cyborg.