The partnership between RIZIN and Bellator continues to be a fruitful one as RIZIN 15 will provide us with yet another cross-promotional title bout.
The two promotions have already had fighters fight between each other in the past, but it wasn’t until RIZIN 14 when things got very interesting.
For RIZIN’s inaugural bantamweight title bout, they had their top star Kyoji Horiguchi take on Bellator’s current 135-pound champion, Darrion ‘The Wolf’ Caldwell.
Now, for the upcoming RIZIN 15 in April, they’ll send over yet another one of their fighters to try and claim gold as Muhammad ‘King Mo’ Lawal rematches with Jiri Prochazka for the inaugural RIZIN light heavyweight title.
King Mo is actually the last man to defeat Prochazka who rides a fantastic seven-fight winning streak.
Bellator President Scott Coker loves the partnership between the promotions and has much more planned for the future.
“I am committed to keeping martial arts in Japan strong and by sending top Bellator athletes like ‘King Mo’ to compete for RIZIN in April, we are doing just that,” Coker told MMAjunkie. “I enjoy collaborating with Nobuyuki Sakakibara and continuing to build upon the solid relationship he and I have had throughout the years. I look forward to more joint ventures between Bellator and Rizin in the near future and wish Mo good luck in his quest to become a champion of RIZIN.”
The relationship isn’t a one-way street either as Coker has gotten Mirko Crop Cop to come to Bellator for his next fight when he rematches Roy Nelson at Bellator 216 on February 17.
As for the rest of RIZIN 15 on April 21, here’s how it currently stacks up.
- Catchweight – 132lbs: (BW C)Kyoji Horiguchi vs Ben Nguyen
- Light heavyweight – 205lbs: (C) – Jiri Prochazka vs Muhammad “King Mo” Lawal
- Lightweight – 155lbs: Koji Takeda vs TBA
- Bantamweight – 135lbs: Kai Asakura vs Ulka Sasaki
- Catchweight – 149lbs: Mikuru Asakura vs Luiz Gustavo
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 2/1/2019