Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney promised several title fights for his promotion’s first pay-per-view offering – Rampage vs. Tito on Nov. 2 – and thus far, he has delivered.
Bellator already has lightweight champion Michael Chandler rematching Eddie Alvarez, who just signed a new deal with the promotion, as well as an interim light heavyweight championship fight between King Mo Lawal and Emanuel Newton.
On Thursday, Bellator added the latest title defense of featherweight champion Pat Curran, who will square off with tournament winner Daniel Straus on the Nov. 2 PPV event at Long Beach Arena in Long Beach, Calif.
“Pat Curran’s one of the best mixed martial artists we have in the game today,” said Rebney in announcing the fight. “Before breaking his hand, Straus was a fixture in the Top 10 rankings with a huge amount of talent. Curran vs. Straus is a fight I’ve wanted to see since Daniel won the tournament a year ago last May. This should be an epic world title fight and our PPV provides the perfect stage.”
Curran (19-4) is currently on a six-fight winning streak. He has defended the belt twice – against Patricio Freire and Shahbulat Shamhalaev – since taking it from Joe Warren early last year.
“I’ve been with Bellator since the beginning, and seen my career grow as Bellator has,” Curran said. “It means the world to me to be able to defend my title on our first pay-per-view, especially with such a tough fight ahead of me.
“I’m not taking Straus lightly. He is an incredibly tough featherweight, and I’m not even thinking about our first fight in 2009, we are two totally different guys right now. This card is stacked, and I want to give Bellator and all our fans a great show.”
Straus (21-4) is on a five-fight streak himself. He won the Season 6 Featherweight Tournament in May of 2012, defeated Alvin Robinson while waiting for his turn at the champ, but then suffered a broken hand that kept him on the sidelines for the past few months.
The fight with Curran is actually a rematch of a fight under the XFO banner in 2009. Curran won that fight by way of knockout.
“It’s finally here. I’ve faced so many setbacks over the last year, and my title shot is finally here,” Straus said. “When Pat and I met in 2009, we were two completely different fighters. Both of us have developed so much in that time, but I still want that loss of my record. That fight taught me a lot about where I was as a fighter, especially considering I’ve gone 17-1 since we last met.
“I’m just excited to be able to get a chance to fight for a title on a huge stage like this. I really don’t know how this fight is going to end, but I envision it going quickly. This won’t be a long, drawn out process. I’m going in for the kill.”