Business is booming for Bellator MMA.
The promotion’s latest show, Bellator 272, would be fireworks last night. The event would end with a ‘KO of the year’ by Sergio Pettis as he knocked out Kyoji Horiguchi with a spinning backfist. Pettis would retain his world title, but the fun was only beginning for the bantamweight division.
A New Tournament
On route to the main event, Bellator would announce on their broadcast that there was a new World Grand Prix on the horizon. This time, it would be at 135lbs, with 8 fighters competing for a world title and 1 million dollars.
Here is the confirmed lineup of fighters for the tournament:
- (C) Sergio Pettis
- Kyoji Horiguchi
- #1 Juan Archuleta
- #2 Raufeon Stots
- #3 Patchy Mix
- #4 Magomed Magomedov
- #5 Leandro Higo
- #6 James Gallagher
🚨 BREAKING 🚨
The Bellator Bantamweight World Grand Prix is coming in 2️⃣0️⃣2️⃣2️⃣.
— BellatorMMA (@BellatorMMA) December 4, 2021
While the Grand Prix’s contestants were chosen from rankings, it will not have its matchups made based off rankings. Bellator president Scott Coker said he will not use a seed system to find their fights (ex: #1 vs. #6). They will also not use a randomizer.
Instead, Coker and his matchmakers will sit down and make the fights from a stylistic standpoint. The tournament will start in 2022, after the Bellator Light Heavyweight Grand Prix ends with Vadim Nemkov vs. Corey Anderson early next year.
There is a total of 5 potential rematches that can be made inside the bantamweight grand prix, as a lot of them have already fought each other. Sergio Pettis looks to retain his belt all throughout the process and will look to secure a $1M purse. He is not interested in picking his opponents and will let Bellator decide who he faces next.
Who Will Win This New Grand Prix?