Sergio Pettis had a successful Bellator debut scoring his first finish win since 2013 as he went his entire 14-fight stretch in the UFC without a finish.
At Bellator 238, Pettis was taking on Alfred Khashakyan in his return to the bantamweight. The Viacom-owned promotion doesn’t have a flyweight division so he was forced to move up to 135. In the fight, Pettis had a ton of success. He dropped Khashakyan and it appeared knocked him out with ground and pound. Yet, the fight wasn’t stopped so the Milwaukee native sunk in a choke and put his opponent out cold.
With the win, Pettis made a statement to the bantamweight division. Given Kyoji Horiguchi vacated due to injury, Bellator president, Scott Coker says Pettis is right there for a title shot. Coker said he hopes to have a title fight made in the next few months.
“I think he looked great. I think he’s right in that mix, because with [Kyoji] Horiguchi being out and DC [Darrion Caldwell] being in the [featherweight] tournament,” Coker said after the fight (via MMA Junkie). “We’re going to host a 135-pound championship [fight] at some point. But we’re going to wait and see how these guys perform over the course of two, three, four months, because we will be doing 30 [events] this year in 2020.
“So we’ll have a lot of opportunity for these guys to get some more fights under their belt. We’ll probably host a 135-pound championship fight in some time.”
If Sergio Pettis is involved in a vacant bantamweight title fight, possible options for opponents could be the likes of Patrick Mix, Juan Archuleta, or Ricky Bandejas. All three have had a ton of success in the promotion and deserve a crack at the title. But, what also makes sense, but Coker did not mention it, is a grand prix.
Regardless, Pettis had a very impressive debut and could very well be fighting for Bellator gold in his next fight.