Bellator president Scott Coker says that Cheick Kongo will get a rematch against Ryan Bader with an impressive win over Tim Johnson.
Kongo and Bader first met last September at Bellator 226, but the fight ended in controversial fashion when Kongo was unable to continue due to eye pokes. The bout was ruled a No Contest and Bader kept his belt, moving back down to 205lbs in an unsuccessful attempt to defend his light heavyweight title against Vadim Nemkov. As for Kongo, he has not fought since the Bader fight but returns to the Bellator cage this weekend when he takes on Johnson in a rematch in the main event of Bellator Paris.
Not only is this weekend’s fight a big deal for the France native Kongo because he gets to realize his dream of headlining a show in his home country, but a potential heavyweight title shot will be on the line for him with a win. Speaking to “La Sueur,” Coker confirmed that Kongo will get a rematch against Bader in early 2021 with a definitive win over Johnson at Bellator Paris. In fact, Coker hinted that the rematch could take place in Paris.
“Wow that would be great, wouldn’t it? It would be fantastic. Listen, if Cheick Kongo wins in a decisive fashion, right, then he should be in line to fight Bader next because their fight was controversial because of the whole eye situation, everything like that,” Coker said.
“Cheick through his manager has told us, look, he wants to fight in France and he wanted to be the first one to go back and to fight there for his fans and to go back to his country. So for me, this was natural. If Cheick wins, maybe we’ll come back next year early and we’ll see the fight between Kongo and Bader in Paris, at the Accor Arena.”
Kongo overall has an impressive record of 12-2, 1 NC fighting in the Bellator heavyweight division. Since the fight with Bader was a No Contest, Kongo is technically on a nine-fight unbeaten streak and hasn’t lost since 2015. As for Bader, he is coming off of the loss to Nemkov that cost him his belt at 205lbs, but he remains the Bellator heavyweight champion. If Kongo beats Johnson this weekend, look for him to get the Bader rematch.
Do you want to see the rematch between Cheick Kongo and Ryan Bader or would you rather see Bader fight someone else?