AJ McKee has a big fight ahead of him, but that won’t keep him from dreaming about another matchup, one with Brian Ortega.
The undefeated 26-year-old AJ McKee is right where he needs to be. He is soaring in the Bellator featherweight division and is now slated for his first title shot. McKee is set to face Bellator Featherweight Champion Patrício Freire at Bellator 263 on July 30 for the Grand Prix title. Along with the win will come a prize of one million dollars.
Is that enough for McKee? No. He wants a shot at UFC featherweight Brian Ortega and the title “King of LA.”
“I do owe Brian Ortega a triangle,” McKee said. “He choked me out when I was like 19, so hey, what’s up? Let’s do something. Nothing personal, but my entire life, I’ve put together a hitlist from everybody in the gym that used to bully me and so forth to people that have had one up on me. And right now, Ortega has one up on me. He put me in a triangle when I was like 18, 19, so I gotta get that get-back. And it’s nothing personal, but we can fight for who’s the king of LA.”
There has long been a debate about the competition between Bellator fighters and UFC fighters. Fans and fighters alike have been calling for some cross-promotional action but it seems that may never happen. McKee has a relationship with Ortega, even if it is in the past. Perhaps they can sort out a fight on their own after McKee’s big opportunity.
Ortega himself has a big fight on the horizon. He is slated to face champion Alexander Volkanovski on September 25 at UFC 266. This will be Ortega’s second title shot. He lost his first attempt against Max Holloway back in 2018. If both of these men are holding belts come September, a showdown for bragging rights could be prime viewing for fans.
Would you want to see a fight between AJ McKee and Brian Ortega?