Rory MacDonald will make his Bellator MMA debut against a fellow UFC veteran when he faces Paul Daley on May 19 in London (online betting).
Promotion officials announced the headliner for Bellator 179 on Thursday. The event will take place at the SSE Arena and will be televised on Spike at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT. Flamboyant welterweight striker Michael Page is also expected to compete on the card against an as-yet-to-be-determined opponent.
MacDonald signed an exclusive contract with the California-based promotion last summer on the heels of back-to-back losses to Robbie Lawler and Stephen Thompson in the UFC. The Tristar Gym export’s debut was delayed as he needed time to let his injured nose heal from damage taken in those previous two bouts. “The Red King” is 18-4 as a professional and owns notable victories over the likes of Tyron Woodley, Demian Maia, Nate Diaz, Tarec Saffiedine, Jake Ellenberger and B.J. Penn.
Daley has won six of his last seven appearances, including a spectacular flying knee knockout of Brennan Ward in his most recent bout at Bellator 170 on Jan. 21. The British slugger’s lone defeat during that time came against current welterweight champion Douglas Lima at Bellator 158. Daley owns a 39-14-2 career mark with wins over Jorge Masvidal, Martin Kampmann, Duane Ludwig and Scott Smith, to name a few.