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Bellator President Coker Raises Stakes in Light Heavyweight Final

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The date for the Bellator MMA Light Heavyweight Grand Prix Final between incumbent champion Vadim Nemkov (14-2 MMA, 6-0 Bellator) and challenger Corey Anderson (16-5 MMA, 3-0 Bellator) has not even been confirmed yet, but already, Scott Coker is raising the stakes for the championship.

A Challenge Is Issued

During Saturday night’s Bellator 268 post-fight press conference, Coker effectively issued a challenge to the finalists of the tournament through his post-fight comments.

“This was a gauntlet of 205ers,” Coker began, “and whoever wins this tournament, to me, is the best 205er on the planet. Period. That’s how I feel.”

Later on in his meeting with the press, Coker mentioned that he was pleased with how the bracket turned out over the course of the past several months.

“The finals that we have now really is a fight that I thought, ‘This could be the finals,’ right?”, he said. “He (Anderson) was going to beat (Ryan) Bader, and I thought Nemkov was going to win. He’s the champ, he’s been looking so good.”

Corey Anderson made short work of Bader on Saturday night for his fastest knockout since coming to Bellator.

The former UFC stalwart needed just 51 seconds to score the TKO of Bader on Saturday night in Phoenix, his third consecutive win inside the distance by knockout.

Nemkov Fought Hard to Win

In that same presser, Scott Coker mentioned that tournament alternate Julius Anglickas, who stepped into replace Anthony Johnson for the Nemkov fight last month after Johnson fell ill, gave Nemkov quite the challenge before the champion pulled away with the submission victory in round four of a scheduled five.

“He (Nemkov) had a tough fight tonight,” Coker said on Saturday, “and so, I’m going to let him heal up for, let’s say, a month or so, but I think we’re going to start having a conversation in the next 30 days about when we’ll have the finals.”

Coker Aiming For a Winter Championship

To that end, Coker would not set a target as to a specific date for the Light Heavyweight Grand Prix Final, but he did say that he’d like to have the tournament completed after the first of the new year.

“I personally would love to have the finals in late January, early February,” he said. “Let’s give those guys time to heal up. Corey obviously doesn’t need to heal up, his fight was very short, but I think Nemkov needs a little rest time, and then, we’ll get it on.”

Overtime Heroics will keep you abreast of the latest information as to the date and venue of this tournament final, so stay tuned for further updates.


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Featured Image Credits to Bellator MMA

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