Jack Swagger has a date and an opponent set for his professional mixed martial arts debut.
Swagger, real name Jake Hager, is a former World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) star. He held the World Heavyweight, ECW, and United States titles during his time with the company. He’ll be transitioning from the world of professional wrestling to combat sports under the Bellator banner.
Jack Swagger vs. J.W. Kiser Set For Bellator 214
Swagger recently appeared on ESPN’s Ariel Helwani MMA show. During his appearance, Swagger revealed that he will meet J.W. Kiser on Jan. 26 for the Bellator 214 card. The action will be held inside The Forum in Inglewood, California.
Speaking to Helwani, Swagger explained why he was stepping inside the Bellator cage (via Chamatkar Sandhu):
“I think my career will be a lot longer than most people imagine, in mixed martial arts. … I have nothing to prove. I’m doing this for me and my family. I know I belong and you will see that I do when I step in the cage.”
The 41-year-old Kiser has been stopped via punches several times as an amateur. While he has pro MMA experience, he’ll be going up against a former NCAA Division I record-holder at the University of Oklahoma. He holds the school’s single-season record for most pins in the 285-pound weight class.
Bellator 214 will be headlined by the Heavyweight World Grand Prix finals. Fedor Emelianenko and Ryan Bader will clash to determine who will be the tournament winner and the new Bellator heavyweight champion. Plus, Gegard Mousasi will defend his middleweight gold against Rafael Lovato Jr.
How do you think Jack Swagger will fare in his MMA debut?