Recently it was announced that Matt Mitrione’s headed to Bellator, and the heavyweight’s heaped praise on the man who helped bring him to the Viacom promotion.
Mitrione entered free agency not long ago, following his controversial, stoppage loss to Travis Browne. The NFL vet acknowledged that he wants to face Browne again, but ultimately, Bellator came with an offer he couldn’t turn down. Mitrione has since reported that the four fight deal will land him a minimum of six figures, per fight.
Well, recently the heavy handed fighter spoke to MMA Mania.com. During the interview, Mitrione had this to say about Bellator President Scott Coker, and critics who will argue he’s no longer going to be fighting top tier competition.
“…Look man, if you believe the UFC is the end all be all then you obviously never understood what Strikeforce was about, what the heavyweight grand prix was about, that Ronda came for there, that Rockhold came from Strikeforce. So if you are going to be a UFC homer than that is your fault for being ignorant. I don’t have to say anything to make you feel one way or the other.
“If you are a fan of the sport, a fan of athletes and a fan of competitors than you are probably going to be a fan of Scott Coker because the man that has a track record of improving the condition of things and he built Strikeforce from the ground up and it was an incredible success. I don’t feel I need to say anything to them.”
There’s no question that Coker did something very special with Strikeforce. After all, the UFC didn’t purchase the company because it was tanking…Further, when you consider Mitrione is 37 years-old, you can’t fault the guy for wanting to make some big pay checks from here on out right? Especially if he’s capable of earning big sponsorship checks.
Bellator has yet to announce when Mitrione will make his Bellator debut.