Bellator champ Christian M'Pumbu returns in non-title action at Bellator 55. | Photo: Keith Mills
Bellator light heavyweight champion Christian M'Pumbu will return to the cage on Oct. 22, but his title will not be on the line.
Sherdog.com has learned from a source close to the situation that M'Pumbu will lock horns with 10-year pro Travis Wiuff in a non-title bout at Bellator 55.
Bound for the Cocopah Resort and Casino in Yuma, Ariz., the event will also feature the semifinals of the Chicago-based promotion's ongoing bantamweight tournament. The main draw, which airs on MTV2 and EPIX, will see Olympic bronze medalist Alexis Vila meet WEC veteran Marcos Galvao while former Bellator tournament runner-up Ed West faces hot Brazilian prospect Eduardo Dantas.
Small for a light heavyweight by American standards, M'Pumbu used superior speed to earn three successive technical knockouts and win Bellator's inaugural light heavyweight tournament this past spring.
The Congolese-born Frenchman has gone 8-1-1 in his last 10 outings, notching wins in Deep and M-1 in addition to his successful Bellator run. M'Pumbu most recently knocked out Richard Hale to capture the Bellator gold, finishing the American with only 43 seconds remaining in their Bellator 45 final on May 21.
Wiuff has won nine of his last 11 contests, suffering his most recent defeat to Tim Hague one year ago. Following that loss, “Diesel” won back-to-back fights in December and May for the Extreme Challenge organization.
The Minnesotan's last run in a major promotion was a three-fight stint with Sengoku from 2008 to 2009, as the 33-year-old knocked out Kazuyuki Fujita in his debut before suffering technical knockouts to Muhammed Lawal and Stanislav Nedkov to exit the promotion with a record of 1-2.