Bellator Signs Top 50 Middleweight Joe Riggs
(Riggs makes contact with Louis Taylor in his final Strikeforce appearance.)
Yesterday Bellator announced the addition of Joe “Diesel” Riggs (#45 Middleweight) to its roster. Not yet 30 years old, the veteran fighter has nearly 50 bouts under his belt and 11 years of professional experience.
“This is the healthiest and the happiest that I can ever remember being in my life. I’m in the prime of my life, I’m injury-free, and things have just really come together in my life,” the UFC, WEC, and Strikeforce veteran was quoted as saying in the press release. “I just can’t wait to show everyone what I have.” No announcement was made regarding Bellator’s next middleweight tournament, so it is unclear at this time whether Riggs will participate in a tourney or simply be booked in a superfight with Bellator Middleweight Champion Hector Lombard.
“Bellator has a lot of well-rounded, talented guys in their middleweight division,” said Riggs. “Guys like Bryan Baker, Eric Schambari, and of course the Middleweight Champion, Hector Lombard. There are some really good middleweights for me to test myself against, and it was one of the reasons I came to Bellator.”
Late last week Bellator announced the third entrant in its season four Welterweight Tournament. Brent Weedman (#84) will join Dan Hornbuckle (#57 Welterweight) and unranked former Olympic judoka Rick Hawn as they compete for $100,000 and a shot at Bellator Welterweight Champion Ben Askren (#16).
The promotion’s inaugural Light-Heavyweight Tournament is the only other officially-announced component of Bellator’s upcoming fourth season, which will air on MTV2. In the coming weeks, Bellator will announce its season four tournament participants. To date, the only other announced fighters for season four are Daniel Gracie and Ron Sparks.
The promotion currently boasts champions in all men’s divisions but Flyweight and Light Heavyweight. Those champions are Zach Makovsky (#11 Bantamweight), Joe Warren (#2 Featherweight), Eddie Alvarez (#10 Lightweight), Ben Askren (#16 Welterweight), Hector Lombard (#6 Middleweight), Cole Konrad (#24 Heavyweight), and Zoila Frausto, who will likely be at the top of the heap when FIGHT! unveils its Women’s Flyweight Rankings.