A featherweight championship rematch between reigning division champion and 2021 Grand Prix victor, A.J. McKee, and former two-weight champion, Patricio Pitbull is currently in the works for a Bellator event in April. At the time of publication, a location or venue for the event has yet to be determined by the organization.

Initially meeting in the Bellator Featherweight World Grand Prix final back in July of last year, the undefeated A.J. McKee snapped the memorable featherweight run of Pitbull with a first round standing guillotine choke after dropping the Brazilian with an earlier high-kick.

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A.J. McKee managed to stop Patricio Pitbull with a submission win inside the opening two minutes of their clash

The victory improved A.J. McKee to 18-0 — his eighteenth under the promotion’s banner, having competed entirely for the Scott Coker-led organization since his debut back in April 2015.

For Pitbull, following his loss to the Californian, which snapped a run of seven straight victories for him, he also vacated his Bellator lightweight championship which is currently held by his elder sibling, Patricky Pitbull following a November knockout win over Peter Queally. Ariel Helwani was first to report the targeted rematch on his official Substack.

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Embarking on a four-fight winning spree including his win over Pitbull throughout the Grand Prix tournament, McKee, a native of Long Beach, stopped Georgi Karakhanyan with strikes, before submitting both Derek Campos, and then former bantamweight champion, Darion Caldwell – the second of which with a Submission of the Year contender neck crank in November 2020.

32-5 as a professional, Pitbull had made his way to the tournament final with a trio of victories against former champion, Juan Archuleta, a knockout over Pedro Carvalho, and a submission win over two-time opponent, Emmanuel Sanchez – the most recent of which back in April of last year. Over the course of his professional career, Pitbull has scored 11 knockout wins to go with 12 submission victories. 

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Aspiring mixed martial arts reporter based in Ireland. Follow along at @Ross_Markey on Twitter for all the latest news, fight announcements, opinion, and feature pieces.