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Rebney: Bellator Did Not Approach Garcia

Kelsey Mowatt

Leonard Garcia

Following his unanimous decision loss to Cody McKenzie at UFC 159, which was Leonard Garcia’s fifth straight defeat, the writing was on the wall in terms of the veteran’s UFC run. Since the featherweight was involved in several classic tilts, and that’s not an exaggeration, there’s probably plenty of fans out there who are more familiar with Garcia then some of the division’s top contenders.

Due to his reputation and aggressive style then, there’s litte doubt that Garcia won’t be on the unemployment line long. In a recent interview with MMA Fighting, Garcia relayed that World Series of Fighting was interested in signing him, and that he believed Bellator was as well. The 33 year-old fighter also added, however, that he was concerned signing with Bellator would close the door to the UFC, and cited the legal battle between Eddie Alvarez and the company.

Garcia’s concerns aside, all this seems completely reasonable right? Two big stage promotions are interested in signing a ridiculously entertaining fighter with a following.

Problem is, however, that according to Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney, they never approached Garcia’s camp. Rebney told MMA that the promotion “had no interest” in signing Garcia, “with all due respect.” Okay. Now this is where it gets really odd and or interesting. Rebney then relayed that:

“What we’ve heard over the last two to three days is that apparently there are some people out there calling gyms and calling managers claiming to be recruiters of talent for Spike and Bellator. The reality of the situation is, I don’t know who’s motivating that or who’s paying people to make those calls, but I will say this: If it’s not me, and it’s not Sam Caplan or Zach Light, then you’re not being contacted by Bellator about the signing of a fighter.”

Wow. Who saw that coming? Sounds like someone out there has way too much spare time on their hands or there’s been the biggest miscommunication in history.


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