Ryan Bader Says UFC’s Light Heavyweight Division Isn’t Deep At All

Ryan Bader
Image Credit: Bellator/Spike

Ryan Bader feels the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) light heavyweight division is rather shallow.

Bader is set to compete in the finals of the Bellator Heavyweight World Grand Prix. He’ll be going one-on-one with Fedor Emelianenko in the main event of Bellator 214 on Jan. 26. The winner will become the new Bellator heavyweight champion.

Bader Talks UFC’s Light Heavyweight Division

Being a former UFC light heavyweight himself, Bader competed at a time when Rashad Evans, Quinton Jackson, Lyoto Machida, Mauricio “Shogun” Rua, Anthony Johnson, Daniel Cormier, and of course Jon Jones were the top dogs at 205 pounds. During a media call, Bader said he believes the UFC light heavyweight division has since become shallow (via MMAJunkie.com):

“I don’t feel the UFC’s light heavyweight division is very deep at all. There’s a handful of guys they keep regurgitating to fight for the belt. There’s not too many to pull from there. Yeah, there’s always guys out there floating around, but I haven’t really thought about it too much. Bellator is doing a great job attracting these high-level guys, and that’s going to come with just a little bit of time. The word’s getting out we’re treated well over here. To be able to have this (Bellator heavyweight) grand prix, and we saw Darrion Caldwell fight in Japan, and so that’s attractive to us.”

Bader currently holds the Bellator light heavyweight title. If “Darth” can defeat Emelianenko, he’ll become the first Bellator fighter to hold two titles simultaneously.

Do you agree with Ryan Bader, or do you think there’s plenty of competition in the UFC light heavyweight division?