After Rory MacDonald beat Neiman Gracie in the semi-finals of the Welterweight Grand Prix, the expectation was that the finals would happen in September. Yet, after the fight, the champion said that was unrealistic.
“I had a feeling they would want (a quick turnaround),” he said at the post-event press conference (as transcribed by The Athletic). “But it’s just not possible with what’s going in my life right now. I need to take some time to heal from these fights, from these training camps, so I could be ready for a guy like Douglas.”
Now, it appears he will get his wish. According to The Athletic, Bellator has given MacDonald a 30-day extension for the Grand Prix final meaning it will now happen in October. Coker told The Athletic that “everyone felt 30 days was reasonable to keep the fight intact.”
MacDonald opened the Grand Prix with a draw over Jon Fitch that resulted in the Canadian to advance to the semi-finals. He then beat Gracie by decision to advance to the finals and take on Douglas Lima in a rematch.
Lima, meanwhile, beat Andrey Koreshkov by submission in the opening round to get back into the win column after losing the title to MacDonald at Bellator 192. In the second round, the former champ knocked out Michael Page to advance to the finals.
There is currently no set date or location for when the finals will take place, but Coker says it has to happen by the end of October.