Gegard Mousasi and Douglas Lima will square off for Bellator’s recently vacated middleweight bout in San Jose, Calif., on May 9.
Bellator president Scott Coker announced the matchup on Tuesday. Mousasi vs. Lima will serve as the co-main event for Bellator 243 at the SAP Center. In the evening’s headliner, Ryan Bader will defend his light heavyweight belt against Vadim Nemkov.
Since we can’t have a cross-promotional superfight I’ll give you another.— Scott Coker (@ScottCoker) February 11, 2020
On May 9, @Mousasi_MMA vs. @PhenomLima for the vacant @BellatorMMA middleweight world championship. pic.twitter.com/8TVpcWP9sa
Rafael Lovato Jr. relinquished the middleweight title earlier this week due to a brain condition that could threaten his MMA career.
Mousasi lost the middleweight title to Lovato Jr. via majority decision at Bellator 223 in London last June. He returned to the win column in his most recent outing, taking a split decision against Lyoto Machida in a rematch at Bellator 228.
Lima, who is Bellator’s reigning welterweight champion, recently signed a new contract extension with the California-based promotion. He regained the 170-pound title with a decision win over Rory MacDonald in the finals of the welterweight grand prix at Bellator 232 on Oct. 26. Lima has won six of his last seven Bellator fights.