Bellator two-weight champion Ryan Bader will finally defend his light heavyweight title.
Bader is set to meet Vadim Nemkov in a Bellator event scheduled for May 9 at the SAP Center in San Jose, California.
The former UFC star has exclusively fought at heavyweight in his last four outings. His last light heavyweight title defense, meanwhile, came in November 2017 when he knocked out Linton Vassell.
However, he will finally return to his old weight class to take on the red-hot Nemkov who is on a four-fight winning streak since debuting for Bellator in 2017. Nemkov most recently submitted former middleweight champion Rafael Carvalho back in October.
“I’m a 205er, been a 205er my whole career, and I want to go back down there,” Bader said (via MMA Junkie). “I owe it to the division to come back down.
“… I wouldn’t have held up the belt if I wasn’t gonna go back down there, and now’s the time.”
Bader is coming off a no contest against Cheick Kongo after an accidental eye poke during their Bellator 226 heavyweight title clash in September. In total, Bader is undefeated in his last eight fights.
What do you think of the matchup? Can Nemkov cause an upset against Bader?