The UFC is known for their strict policy against co-promoting events with other MMA promotions. However Scott Coker says that he would open the door to them, if someone wants to face the new Bellator featherweight champ AJ McKee.
This was not the first time that Coker has been asked about a co-promotion with the UFC, and his answer is usually the same. The issue is that Dana White has made it clear that he sees no benefit in putting his fighters against Bellator fighters.
Following his win over Patricio Pitbull to win Bellator’s featherweight Grand Prix and belt, AJ McKee said that he was interested in taking on anyone the UFC has to offer. Speaking to press after the event, the Bellator President said that he would be down for that, if the UFC agreed.
“Yeah, I mean I would love to see (McKee) fight against other people as well, as you guys would also. It’s not going to happen because it’s not the UFC’s business model to do it,” Coker said.
“But you’re telling me this kid couldn’t go in there and fight anybody right now? Everybody knows that he can do it. So if they want to get it on, we’d do it in a second. That’s how I feel.”
Scott Coker, Dana White, and the History of Co-Promotion
To be clear, Scott Coker and Dana White are business rivals, but they do not have the type of vitriol for one another that Dana has had with other promoters. That said, it seems like the UFC will never co-promote an event with Bellator.
The only time in history that something like that has happened, was when the UFC sent fighters over to Pride, to compete in their tournament, and when Conor McGregor fought Floyd Mayweather. They have even notoriously lost the ability to have Fedor Emelianenko in their promotion because they refused to co-promote.
So as much as Scott Coker believes in his fighter’s abilities to hang with the UFC’s fighters, it seems like an impossibility that this will ever be tested. Then again, AJ McKee seems to be a budding star, so who knows what could happen in the end.