Ryan Bader is looking to make his first light heavyweight title defense since November 2017, and it appears the Bellator two-division champ has his eyes on a belt holder from another organization.
The former Arizona State University wrestling standout recently took to Twitter to call out Jiri Prochazka after Rizin’s reigning 205-pound king defeated C.B. Dollaway via first-round knockout on New Year’s Eve in Saitama, Japan. Dollaway and Bader are longtime teammates at Power MMA.
Bader had designs on competing for Rizin, but he revealed he was unable to come to terms to fight Prochazka in the Japanese organization. Crossover bouts between Bellator and Rizin fighters have become quite common of late, and now it appears Bader is ready to put his light heavyweight belt up for grabs against Prochazka.
Bader claimed the Bellator light heavyweight crown with a split verdict over Phil Davis in his promotional debut before defending the title with a second-round stoppage of Linton Vassell at Bellator 186. Since then, Bader captured heavyweight gold by winning the Bellator grand prix and then had his first title defense against Cheick Kongo end in a no contest at Bellator 226.
A 27-year-old native of Czech Republic, Prochazka is currently on a 10-bout winning streak, including eight straight via KO or TKO.