Well, it is official that Scott Coker and Bellator are in the hunt for free agents! Not just washed up veterans either, we’re talking still relevant contenders. That became quite clear when Benson Henderson announced yesterday that he has signed with the Viacom owned company.
This is Bellator’s first major free agent signing since the UFC teamed up with Reebok in 2015, a move that took a lot of money out of the pockets of fighters in regards to sponsorships. Bellator doesn’t have any such partnership and fighters are free to have their own sponsors. It wouldn’t be shocking if other fighters start following Benson’s footsteps.
Money may have something to do with Henderson’s decision, but the fact that he could be a major focal point for Bellator’s 155lb and 170lb divisions is just as big of a deal. It is quite possible that within the next year “Smooth” could hold either one of those titles and be on his way to a long and illustrious reign as champion.
The former UFC lightweight champion has two straight victories over Brandon Thatch and Jorge Masvidal. Both were at welterweight and both were short notice matchups. It was the perfect way for Henderson to end his UFC contract, riding high on a winning streak never hurts contract negotiations.
An opponent for Benson Henderson’s Bellator debut has yet to be announced, but expect it to be a high profile fight. For more updates on this situation and all things MMA keep checking back with profightingfans.com.
Pro Fighting Fans Editor/Writer