Ryan Bader’s Bellator debut will see him challenge for the promotion’s 205-pound title against champion Phil Davis, a fighter whom Bader already holds a victory over.
This comes after Bader’s original opponent ‘King’ Muhammed Lawal was forced to withdraw with injury. Davis confirmed the news on Monday’s episode of The MMA Hour.
Bader recenty signed with Bellator after a 20-fight career in the UFC where he amassed a record of 8 wins and 1 loss in his last 9 fights. Davis won the Bellator title from former champion Liam McGeary last November, following on from wins over Lawal, Francis Carmont and Emanuel Newton under the Bellator banner and will no defend his strap against the last man to hold a victory over him.
Davis lost a split decision to Bader in his last fight with the company at UFC on Fox 14 in Sweden before signing entering free agency and inking a deal with Bellator.
Bellator 180 is the lead-in to the promotion’s New York debut in Madison Square Garden on June 24th. Also featured on the card will be a main event between Chael Sonnen and Wanderlei Silva, as well as bouts between Fedor Emelianenko and Matt Mitrione, Douglas Lima and Lorenz Larkin and Michael Chandler vs. Brent Primus.