Jon Jones made headlines early this week when he announced his departure as the UFC light heavyweight champion. After a lengthy run as the king of the 205-pound division, the 33-year-old “Bones” now wants to test his skills against the elite heavyweights in the game today.
With Jones out of the picture, Bellator CEO Scott Coker now sees an opportunity for his light heavyweight fighters to shine.
“Listen, with Jon Jones moving up to heavyweight, I think we have the best 205-pound weight class on the planet with Bader, Gegard wants to move up, we have (Lyoto) Machida, and we have Corey Anderson now,” Coker told MMA Junkie ahead of Bellator 244 on Saturday. “We have a bunch of killers in that weight class.
“To me, we have a great roster of fights for him (Corey Anderson) – and even Phil Davis. I mean, we’ll be able to put some great fights together, and I’m excited about that division.”
For reigning double-champion Ryan Bader, Bellator is also “definitely stepping up” in terms of paying its fighters. He already expects the newly-signed Corey Anderson to be getting “way more” than what he was receiving while in the UFC.