Riddle had won his last four fights in the UFC, but two of them were changed to no contests due to him failing his post-fight drug tests. In both cases, Riddle tested positive for marijuana metabolites.
He initially signed with Legacy FC, but Bellator negotiated an agreement with Riddle and Legacy that made enough sense for the Texas based promotion to cut him loose.
Riddle will join Bellator’s Season 9 Welterweight Tournament this Fall.
“I had so many options after I left the UFC, but knowing that I was able to compete in a tournament against guys like Paul Daley, Ben Saunders, and Douglas Lima, signing with Bellator was an easy decision,” Riddle said. “This division is just so stacked, and being able to fight in a tournament makes it even better. Bellator is doing a lot of great things right now, and I want to be a part of it.”
Bellator CEO & Chairman Bjorn Rebney understands some of the risks involved with signing Riddle, but after discussions with Riddle, Rebney is confident the 27-year-old welterweight is in the right place to impact the welterweight division.
“Matt’s got all the tools to be a force in our welterweight division,” Rebney said. “When I saw Matt get released from the UFC coming off four straight wins, including his dominant win over Mills in February, we took notice. We both realize that Matt will have a target on his back for his past indiscretions. But having discussed it with him, I’m comfortable that he’s in the right place to enter the Bellator cage this fall in what will be the most loaded Bellator Welterweight Tournament in the promotion’s history.”
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