Slim Trabelsi Signs with Bellator MMA, ARES FC Threatens to Block Deal

Slim Trabelsi
Slim Trabelsi Credit: ARES FC

Tunisian heavyweight Slim Trabelsi is once again singed by a major promotion, with the heavyweight inking a multi-fight deal with Bellator MMA.

And once again, it appears there could be a wrench in the works.

Trabelsi’s signing was confirmed by Cageside Press on Thursday, following an initial report by TSN’s Aron Bronsteter. Within hours, however, news broke that Fernand Lopez, head coach and owner of MMA Factory and the man behind ARES FC, planned to file an injunction to prevent the heavyweight from jumping ship.

Trabelsi (5-0) is the current ARES FC heavyweight champion, a title he won this past September. Lopez blocked a similar attempt by the UFC at signing Trabelsi last year; that also led to a nasty public spat between the coach/promoter and Dominance MMA, who represent Trabelsi.

The 29-year old was booked to compete against Parker Porter at UFC 280 in Abu Dhabi last October, but the contract dispute scuttled that fight.

While a Bellator official confirmed the signing of Slim Trabelsi to Cageside Press on Thursday, they were not able to speak to Lopez’s claims. In the previous contract dispute, Lopez had offered Dominance MMA the chance to buy out Trabelsi’s contract. No such deal ever materialized, however.’s Cole Shelton was first to report that Lopez was again attempting to block Trabelsi signing elsewhere, citing Fernand himself.