Coker: ‘Bellator Ramping Up For 2016, Will Put On More Fights, Including International’

August 30, 2015 1:41 am by BJPENN.COM News

Scott Coker has been behind the scenes at Bellator for just over a year now and is finally looking to ramp up the output of events the company has.

By year’s end, Bellator will have dished out sixteen fights in just twelve months. The final event of the year will be Bellator 147 where former UFC title contender Josh Koscheck is set to make his debut. Next year, Coker is hoping to put out at least twenty-two fights!

“This year, 16 fights. Next year, we’re going to do about 22 to 24 fights. So we’re going to increase the volume,” Coker told MMA Junkie. “We’ll go from four ‘tent poll’ events to seven, and one of them will be the ‘Dynamite’ show. It’s kind of developing into a brand of its own.”

Coker also revealed plans to take the promotion overseas. “Next year, we’re also going to do some international fights. I just got back from Tel Aviv in Israel– we have a TV deal there. I was in Italy. I was in London. We have deals in the Middle East. We have a deal in Southeast Asia. There are 140 countries that watch Bellator every time we throw a fight.”

Coker went on to explain that he wanted to do it this year, but they don’t have the roster needed in order to product that many shows a year. Considering what UFC light heavyweight Ryan Bader mentioned about fighters riding out their contracts with the UFC, twenty-four fights in 2016 could be a reality.

“When I came into the company, I said, ‘We don’t have the roster right now to be doing 24 fights a year… We need to step back. Then we can ramp up.’ I feel like we’re in a little bit of a groove.”

Is Bellator on the same level Strikeforce was when they faded out? If not, how long until they get there? Will stars like Kimbo Slice help them, or hurt them? Share your advice in the comment section below!

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