Ryan Bader. UFC or Bellator? “I should know in the next couple of days.”

Ryan Bader. UFC or Bellator? “I should know in the next couple of days.”

Ryan Bader is in a great place at the moment. Like, a REALLY great place. Remember in the movie Se7en when Detective Somerset said, “John Doe has the upper hand now”? Ryan Bader is John Doe.

Bader has fought out his UFC contract and like the smart man he is, he’s testing the free agency market. The UFC have already lost Phil Davis to Bellator and the loss of Bader would be a brutal hit to the division. After the top 5 at light heavyweight, there is an immediate and steep decline in talent. One could argue that it is the most shallow in the UFC’s division pool.

Ryan Bader went on the MMA Hour yesterday and spoke with Ariel Helwani about his current situation in MMA. He seems very close to making his choice, as to where he’s going. It’s nice to see fighters finally having options.

Scott Coker

“I went out and met with Scott Coker and the Bellator boys and I like what they had to say. I like what they are about. So, we are kind of going through that (contract) process. That being said, the UFC has the right to match.”

What he wants

“I want to know what their plan is for me, on both sides (UFC or Bellator). I just don’t want to sign a deal and say, ‘Ok, we are signing a 4, 6, or 8 fight deal. These are your terms and this is your money. Alright, good to go. Bye.’ I want to know what the plan is for me. What we are thinking about the first fight. What is the road to the title? Something in stone, whereas not just signing a contract and not knowing where you are at.”

“Look I love the UFC. I owe a lot to them. At the same time, I’ve stepped up and taken every single fight they threw at me (and no title shot). It’s just a time for me to look out for what’s best with my family.”

Any other organizations in the running

“It’s definitely between Bellator and the UFC. Absolutely, 100%.”

Bellator offer

“I should know in the next couple of days.”

If he’d be ok going to Bellator and never receiving a UFC title shot

“I’d be fine with it. My answer would be ‘yeah’, because I know that I am going out there and giving it my all every time. I could walk away and be fine with that. If I go to Bellator, my focus 100% is on winning THAT belt.”

If he goes to Bellator, Tito Ortiz or title shot.

“Title fight. 100%.”

If you would like to watch the full video of Ariel Helwani’s interview with Ryan Bader: