Bellator has announced that welterweight champion Douglas Lima and flyweight champion Ilima-Lei Macfarlane have signed multi-fight, multi-year extensions with the company.
Early Monday, Bellator MMA sent out a press release stating that reigning welterweight and flyweight champions Douglas Lima and Ilima-Lei Macfarlane had signed multi-fight, multi-year contract extensions with the company. Per standard, the exact number of fights, years, and dollar amount were not disclosed but it is assumed that the two had re-negotiated new deals after having benchmark years in 2019.
Douglas “The Phenom” Lima (32-7) had a career year in which he vanquished rival Andrey Koreshkov for the second time and turned in a knockout of the year candidate with his finish of fellow vaunted striker Michael “Venom” Page. In October, he closed out the year with a definitive victory over Rory MacDonald to regain his title, avenge his loss from two years prior, and win the Welterweight Grand Prix $1 million grand prize. The victory adds onto an already impressive Bellator resume that also includes victories over the likes of Lorenz Larkin and Paul Daley. With an argument for being one of the best welterweights in MMA, many are pointing to a possible move up to middleweight for a match-up with Gegard Mousasi for the now vacant title there.
Flyweight champion Ilima-Lei Macfarlane (11-0) has grown into a breakout star for Bellator and is now the centerpiece of the promotion’s annual trip to Hawaii every December. The undefeated champion has fought virtually her entire professional career in the promotion and her decision to re-sign has comes as no surprise as she is frequently vocal about her desire to remain with the company. Macfarlane is not lacking for options in 2020 as her teammate Liz Carmouche joins contenders such as Julianna Velasquez and Alejandra Lara who are vying for a shot at the title, possibly even in a women’s Grand Prix.
Neither Lima nor Macfarlane are currently scheduled for a fight but it is expected that news will be announced in the coming weeks as the promotion begins to build their spring schedule.