Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney has responded to the recent criticism from lightweight Eddie Alvarez. Rebney took to multiple outlets on Monday afternoon to present his side of the situation, where he spoke on multiple issues including their offer to Alvarez, the subsequent lawsuits by both parties, and the future with Alvarez.
According to MMAFighting, Rebney vehemently asserts they matched every term in the contract. Stating:
“I will tell you point blank, no questions asked, we matched it dollar for dollar, term for term and section for section,” he said. “To avoid any kind of ambiguity, let me make clear, we took the UFC contract, we took it out of the PDF format, we changed the name ‘UFC’ to ‘Bellator’ and we signed it. We didn’t alter a word, we didn’t alter a phrase, we didn’t alter a section, we didn’t alter a dollar figure.”
The Bellator frontman also talked about the possible PPV offerings that the UFC likely offered Alvarez.
“There is no guaranteed pay-per-view in the UFC offer to Eddie Alvarez,” he says emphatically. “We as Bellator don’t have to match projections. We don’t have to match what could conceptually happen. We have to match guaranteed dollars and what the UFC contractually guaranteed would occur. That is what we are held to.”
Rebney believed the company had a strong chance of resigning the fighter as early as last week, before Alvarez called back with a team of lawyers. It was at that point, according to Rebney, where things started to get ugly. Both sides followed suit against each other shortly after that call. The Bellator CEO, who has had a long and previously strong relationship with the former champ, even offer to fly Alvarez out to the promotion’s California offices to clear the air but the request was refused.
Despite their current state, Rebney believes the two can do business together again and maintains this is just business. Stating:
“Ed and I have four years of a good working relationship and about 30 days of not a good relationship,” he said. “When you weigh those factors out, there’s a very high likelihood we could shake hands and get past it with a fair amount of ease. Ed’s in business and as you can see from the numbers, it can be a very lucrative business. I know I can shove off and move forward, put things back in line in short order. I hope Ed can do the same. It may be a long, drawn out fight between the two or something that can be settled relatively quickly. We’ll see.”
The situation is currently one to watch in the coming weeks, with both sides looking for common ground.