Bellator lightweight A.J. McKee headlined the Bellator x RIZIN event against reigning Rizin FF lightweight champion Roberto de Souza. De Souza managed more submission attempts and closed out the fight strongly, however, McKee persisted and displayed more offense to secure a unanimous decision victory.
Bellator MMA CEO Scott Coker spoke in the aftermath of his promotion sweeping their Japanese counterparts 5-0. He expressed his concern for McKee in the final fight as things got a little tight with de Souza's submission attempts.
"I always said my wish is to go 5-0 and I'm happy that my guys won. But to me, it was very competitive out there. That last fight, with de Souza when he was fighting A.J., there was a couple of times I thought maybe he might get tapped. So it was very stressful to watch that last fight, it was very back and forth. I thought A.J. did what he had to do to win but you know, anything can happen in a fight, as you know, in MMA. So it was an entertaining night of fights."
Check out Scott Coker's full interview on YouTube below:
A.J. McKee compares teammate Zion Clark to Francis Ngannou
A.J. McKee recently spoke about his teammate Zion Clark and likened him to UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou. Clark is a mixed martial artist who was born without his legs due to a rare medical condition and trains under McKee's father, Antonio.
After Clark's professional MMA debut and win, McKee spoke to SHAK MMA in an interview and said:
"And then fighting a guy who is 125 pounds, like, this man has the body - the upper torso of Francis Ngannou. Like, he's easily a 220-pounder, you know what I mean, like this man is huge. And anybody that's 125 pounds, when he grabs them, they're gonna be like 'Holy!' like this, like it's unreal, you know. Maybe a 155-pounder like, I go neck and neck with him with the grip. But I also have my father McKee's strength and his grip is just absurd as well."
McKee also praised Clark's strength, skill, and commitment to discipline despite his physical limitations. He also predicted another win for him in his upcoming bout, stating that he wouldn't be surprised if Clark choked his opponent out.
Check out A.J. McKee's full comments in his interview with SHAK MMA: