The MMA fans across the world will soon be able to experience a superfight between the Bellator Bantamweight Champion Darrion Caldwell(13-1) and Japanese MMA star Kyoji Horiguchi(25-2) at Rizin Fighting Federation(RFF) in Japan for the company’s inaugural bantamweight title.
The rumours were going in and on around the corner about a possible superfight between the two until a Rizin FF news conference confirmed it to be happening.
The former NCAA wrestling champ Caldwell is on a 4 fight winning streak and last won his fight at featherweight by knocking out Noad Lahat at Bellator 204.He is also Bellator’s bantamweight champ since October 2017.While his opponent Horiguchi,a former UFC title challenger who lost to Demetrious Johnson (when he was the champ)has had a 7 fight winning streak since joining Rizin.He last fought and lost via unanimous decision to Tenshin Nasukawa who will be fighting at the same card against Floyd Mayweather in an exhibition boxing match.
Bellator President Scott Coker tweeted out,“Sending our Alpha Wolf to Japan.@TheWolfMMA let’s go get you another belt”.
“Working for the Japanese fight company K-1 was a magical time during my promotional career and I have always felt strongly that MMA in the ‘Land of the Rising Sun’ would rise again. It truly is amazing to see what Nobuyuki Sakakibara has been able to do thus far with Rizin FF, so when he reached out to me about putting Darrion Caldwell against Kyoji Horiguchi for Rizin’s belt, we spoke to Darrion and he jumped at the opportunity,” Bellator President Scott Coker said. “Bellator wants to support Rizin, and by sending our bantamweight champion to compete during their New Year’s Eve event, we look forward to this leading towards more collaboration between the two promotions in 2019. I want to wish Darrion luck in his quest to prove he is the best 135-pound fighter on the planet.”
Nobuyuki Sakakibara(Rizin FF President) also had some great words for Scott Coker and Bellator.He said,“I am very grateful and honored that Bellator and Scott Coker would send us their unarguable bantamweight champion to fight for Rizin’s first-ever world title fight. This title fight will be a true champion vs. champion to determine the world’s best bantamweight fighter. We hope this kind gesture will kick off of a series of exciting matchups between both promotions in 2019. My dream would be that eventually we can co-promote a mega event in both countries with a ‘Champion Carnival’ taking place where stories and rivalries can be built and told.”
The match will take place on December 31 at Saitama Super Arena in Japan at Rizin 14.