The bracket for the Bellator MMA World Grand Prix 2018 Heavyweight Tournament has been set.
At Bellator 192: Lima vs. MacDonald on January 20, 2018 at The Forum in Los Angeles, the tournament will begin with former champ Quinton “Rampage” Jackson (37-12) taking on renowned trash-talker Chael Sonnen (30-15-1) in an exciting first-round matchup. The event will air on the soon-to-launch Paramount Network.
Shortly thereafter, Matt Mitrione (12-5) will meet Roy Nelson (23-14) on February 16 at Bellator 194, an event which will emanate from the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Conn. In April, the greatest heavyweight of all time Fedor Emelianenko (36-5, 1 NC) battles former UFC champ Frank Mir (18-11) inside Allstate Arena in Chicago in a long-awaited clash. The final first round bout will feature current Bellator light heavyweight champion Ryan Bader (24-5) taking on former STRIKEFORCE champ “King Mo” Lawal (21-6, 1 NC) at San Jose, California’s SAP Center in May.
Dates for both the semi-finals and final will be determined, as will tournament alternates who will be available to fill in due to any unforeseen circumstances. The year-long World Grand Prix Heavyweight Tournament will culminate in the winner becoming the new Bellator world heavyweight champion.
Bellator Heavyweight Grand Prix First-Round Matchups:
Bellator 192 at The Forum – Jan. 20, 2018: Quinton “Rampage” Jackson (37-12) vs. Chael Sonnen (30-15-1)
Bellator 194 at Mohegan Sun Arena – Feb. 16, 2018: Matt Mitrione (12-5) vs. Roy Nelson (23-14)
Bellator at Allstate Arena – April, 2018: Fedor Emelianenko (36-5, 1 NC) vs. Frank Mir (18-11)
Bellator at SAP Center – May, 2018: Ryan Bader (24-5) vs. “King Mo” Lawal (21-6, 1 NC)