Bellator president Scott Coker has offered some perspective on Rory MacDonald’s exit from the promotion.
Fight fans were surprised to hear the news of MacDonald’s decision to sign with the PFL after his Bellator contract expired. MacDonald told ESPN’s Ariel Helwani that Bellator didn’t even give him a formal offer to remain with the organization.
Coker Says Bellator Passed On Re-Signing MacDonald
MMAJunkie.com caught up with Coker following the Bellator 236 ceremonial weigh-ins. The Bellator boss said the time was right to move on from “Red King.”
“I don’t want to get into negotiations and all that,” Coker told MMA Junkie on Friday after the ceremonial weigh-ins for Bellator 236 in Honolulu. “This is what I will say: At the end of the day, we keep the fighters that we want to keep. I think historically, we’ve been successful in that. If we want to keep you on the roster, we’ll find a way. Look, agents come into play, dollars come into play, and it’s a value proposition at some point. So to me, we just passed. We just said, ‘Hey, we wish you luck.’
“I think he’s a great guy and I don’t want to say anything about Rory other than we had some great fights here together, he was a great partner and now it’s time for him to move on.”
MacDonald went 3-2-1 under the Bellator banner. He captured the welterweight gold from Douglas Lima and retained his title against Jon Fitch via draw and Neiman Gracie via unanimous decision. MacDonald suffered a TKO loss to Gegard Mousasi in a failed bid for the middleweight gold and dropped a decision to Lima in their rematch.