Bellator Fighting Championships instituted a new “championship rematch clause” this week stating that if a title fight warrants a rematch, champion or challenger can get one without having to go back through an eight-man tournament.
It's good news for 2013, but bad news if your name is Eddie Alvarez or Jay Hieron.
As Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney explains, this new policy goes into effect starting with the promotion's fights in 2013, and will not be retroactively applied to past title fights that ended closely or went down in exciting fashion.
“It's going to start in 2013. A lot of people have asked me will this retroactively apply to Ed (Alvarez), he demolished (Shinya) Aoki, and Aoki was No. 5 in the world, and then the incredible knockout over (Patricky) Pitbull in front of the packed house up in Canada. At this point, I talk to Ed on a regular basis, but there's no negotiation going on, there's no discussion,” Rebney told MMAWeekly Radio earlier this week.
“So a consideration of retroactive applicability to this hasn't been one we've really given any consideration to.”
Any future title fight will fall in line with Bellator's new policy, however, and Rebney can point at a couple examples right away of the kind of bouts that could produce the close or explosive action required for a rematch.
“At this point, I'm looking at (Rick) Hawn/(Michael) Chandler and thinking that might be an incredible fight coming up for us at lightweight and that could be one very well that would produce the fireworks that warrants a rematch. Or (Patricio) Pitbull and Pat Curran, which is two of the top 145 pounders on Earth going at it, that could be a rematch type of fight,” said Rebney.
“I'm looking forward on all of those.”
Bellator will close out final season on MTV2 with two more shows this year before debuting on Spike TV in early 2013.