Bellator News: Ryan Bader wants to become a three-division world champion by winning the Rizin Championship
Ahead of his first Bellator Heavyweight Championship defense at Bellator 226, Ryan Bader was in conversation with USA TODAY Sports and during the interview, the current Bellator Double Champion revealed his plans of challenging for the Rizin Championship in Japan.
Ryan Bader's legacy in Bellator
In 2017, Ryan Bader was signed to a contract by Bellator MMA and on Ariel Helwani's MMA Hour podcast, the former UFC fighter revealed the details about his contract with Scott Coker's promotion.
Bader got off to a picture-perfect start with Bellator, as he won the Bellator Light Heavyweight Championship from Phil Davis in a UFC rematch from 2015. At Bellator 199 in 2018, Bader moved up to the heavyweight division when he defeated Muhammed Lawal in the first round of the in the Bellator Heavyweight Grand Prix Tournament.
After a win over Matt Mitrione, Bader defeated veteran fighter Fedor Emelianenko in the finals of the tournament at Bellator 214 to win the vacant Bellator Heavyweight Championship.
Bader's Rizin plans
While interacting with USA TODAY Sports, Ryan Bader seemed to be pretty confident about his upcoming fight against Cheick Kongo at Bellator 226, as the current Bellator Light Heavyweight and Heavyweight Champion revealed that the next goal is to go over to Japan and challenge for the Rizin belt.
With a win over Fedor in his last bout, Bader feels that he is in the pinnacle of the sport and also added that going over to Rizin and becoming a three-division world champion would be great for both him and Bellator. (H/T: MMA Junkie)
“I’m at the pinnacle of the sport. I knocked out Fedor, I won the heavyweight tournament and became a two-weight champion. The next goal is to defend the heavyweight belt. And after that, I love the idea of going over (to Japan) and challenging for the Rizin belt. I think that would be great for me, for Bellator, for everybody, to go over and become a three-division world champion across two different organizations.”
When is Bellator 226?
Bellator 226 takes place on the 7th of September at the SAP Center in San Jose, California and the card will be headlined by Ryan Bader and Cheick Kongo, as the two men get set to battle for the Bellator Heavyweight Championship.