Frank Hyden MMATorch Columnist
I like it. It’s different and unique, which makes it cool in my opinion. I think it also builds prestige for both organizations. There’s Bellator fans who have never heard of RIZIN and RIZIN fans who have never heard of Bellator. Your division might look a little weak if your champion loses to their champion but there’s a lot of factors involved in that and it’s not that simple. I think the benefits far outweigh any potential negatives.
Michael Hiscoe MMATorch Columnist
I think it’s good for both promotions to exchange fighters from time to time to create fresh matchups. RIZIN is a promotion that leans a little more heavily towards the entertainment side of things so it lends them credibility to have one of their top fighters come over to Bellator and win a championship. It’s similar to the relationship between Ring of Honor and New Japan. Ring of Honor wrestlers gain credibility from appearing in a big Japanese promotion while the New Japan wrestlers can expose themselves to the American audience in Ring of Honor. I’d encourage Bellator and RIZIN to continue this relationship.
Sean Covington MMATorch Contributor
I feel as if the deal will go south for some reason in the future. I’m hoping it’s a partnership that can last but I don’t see it happening because of other rocky relationships I see in sports right now. If it does last, I think we can see some great matchups and have higher stakes than normal and that’s always good for viewership. It certainly puts some pressure on UFC to make their fights more special.
Aaron Crider MMATorch Contributor
I think the exchange between Bellator and RIZIN is a good thing, as long as it remains champion vs. champion. It’s a great way to highlight both promotions, and it shines light on elite fighters the rest of the world doesn’t yet know. Might even redeem the term “superfight” in the future.
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