Bellator MMA didn’t waste any time finding an opponent for the promotion’s most recent free agent signing.
On Thursday, the company revealed that it had inked long-time welterweight standout and former Ultimate Fighting Championship title challenger Jon Fitch to a multi-fight deal. Just a day later, Bellator MMA has revealed that Fitch will make his promotional debut at Bellator 199 on May 12, taking on British banger Paul Daley in a welterweight affair at the SAP Center in San Jose, Calif.
The Fitch-Daley clash is expected to be the co-feature of the Bellator 199 bill, which is headlined by the Bellator heavyweight world grand prix quarterfinal bout between Ryan Bader and Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal.
Fitch, who turned 40 years old on Feb. 24, has won six of his last seven bouts. Since succumbing to a kneebar from Rousimar Palhares in their December 2014 World Series of Fighting welterweight title bout, the former Purdue Boilermaker wrestler has won four in a row, knocking off Yushin Okami, Joao Zeferino and Jake Shields before choking out Brian Foster this past June at the inaugural event presented by the Professional Fighters League, the retooled incarnation of WSOF.
The 35-year-old Daley has gone 6-2 under Bellator employ, only dropping bouts to former 170-pound titlist Douglas Lima and current champion Rory MacDonald this past May. “Semtex” rebounded from his loss to MacDonald at Bellator 183 in September -- also in the Capital of Silicon Valley -- upsetting another recent promotional free agent signing in Lorenz Larkin, knocking “Da Monsoon” out in the second round.