Bellator President Scott Coker is hoping that Yoel Romero will fight prior to the end of 2021. The bigger question, however, is what weight class he’ll be fighting at.
“As far as when he’s going to fight, we have to wait until he’s cleared. As soon as we get that clearance, we’ll definitely schedule him right away,” Coker revealed following Bellator 260 on Friday night. “We’re hoping before the end of the year he’ll at least fight one time.”
Romero was one of Bellator’s big free-agent signings last year, and was expected to fight Anthony “Rumble” Johnson in the promotion’s light heavyweight grand prix. That didn’t happen. The fight fell through when Romero was unable to pass medicals for the fight. Of late, the Cuban fighter has hinted at an August return.
With that in mind, a light heavyweight reserve bout might be possible. On Friday, Coker wasn’t ready to commit — and there are other options.
“As far as being an alternate for the tournament, that’s definitely a consideration,” admitted Coker. “But another consideration is to have him move down to 185 and have him start fighting there and getting busy. Maybe next year, if Gegard [Mousasi]’s still the champion, or whoever he fights, we can have a big super-fight there.”
Friday night saw the crowning of a new welterweight champion in Bellator, with Yaroslav Amosov dethroning Douglas Lima and moving to 26-0. Amosov is yet another product of Bellator’s sharp talent-scouting skills, but drafting talent is a little harder these days, with the number of large-scale MMA promotions in the market.
Asked about what made Amosov stand out early on, Coker replied by saying that “the fight that really stood out to me is him and Ed Ruth, they had a great battle back-and-forth. And then he had a great fight here with Logan Storley, which to me that was an amazing fight, fast-paced fight that he won. But that was a very close fight, I think that fight was a split decision if I’m not mistaken.”
Coker expects Storley to be in the hunt for a shot at Amosov in future. “There is a tremendous pool of athletes that would love to fight him. And I think Logan’s going to be right up there.”
As for Yaroslav Amosov and other takents like him, “we’re out there looking for the best fighters in the world, and Amosov is definitely one of them. He took a couple years to get here, and now he’s the champ, so it all worked out for him.”
Watch the full Bellator 260 post-fight press conference with Scott Coker above.