Bellator CEO Responds To World Series of Fighting Challenge: “I’m Not Focused on Callouts”

January 20, 2014
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Bjorn RebneyLast week, World Series of Fighting issued a challenge to Bellator MMA. Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney responded to that challenge on Monday.

WSOF vice president Ali Abdel-Aziz, on last week’s episode of The MMA Hour, threw out the challenge: a pay-per-view event pitting 10 WSOF fighters against 10 Bellator fighters. The winning promotion would keep all gate receipts and pay-per-view revenue from the event.

WSOF went as far as tweeting out its proposed match-ups.

“With the unveiling that we’ve just done over the last week or so of Season 10, the best season in our history, the light heavyweight tournament that I just announced [Monday], which is the most competitive we’ve ever done featuring a 100-percent healthy Quinton ‘Rampage’ Jackson looking to re-establish himself as the best in the world, we’re in 140 countries around the world right now and growing, the announcement of the Fox alliance which gives us the biggest distribution in the history of Latin America for MMA. Next week we’re going to be announcing a new alliance with the Middle East, which gives us the biggest distribution in the history of the Middle East when it comes to MMA. And, by the way, we’re on Spike, who basically wrote the book on mixed martial arts in terms of distribution in the U.S. and drilled the highest rated MMA content with us this fall.

“Look, I’m focused on our business,” said Rebeny during a media conference call on Monday. “I’m not focused on callouts.”

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  • TheCerealKiller

    Because you know your promotion sucks.

    If WSOF agreed to split the profit, you still wouldn’t touch the offer.

    • shakejunt

      not his call anyway. media gangsters don’t gamble like that.

      • Alex

        Rebney himself gambled like that against Coker. LOL

        • shakejunt

          not under viacom’s watch

  • Alex

    LOOOL, Rebney, what a little little hypocrite guy.

    Remember yourself calling out Scott Coker in Strikeforce for the Melendez/Alvarez fight?

  • TNT

    Funny Rebney. Of course their gonna be the most distributed in all those country’s. Their owned by Viacom, it only makes sense. He is just jealous that WSOF got on NBCS, so he got to bring up these stupid stats that don’t mean anything, to seem better than them. Rebney is a straight creep. Lol

  • metoo

    Yes bellator has it’s own thing going right now, I think next year would be better. More time to think things through. Maybe 3 ppv. Wsof 1 ppv bellator 1 then on the third one winner take all. Cross promotion fights sounds like a winner to me.

  • Timothy Malone

    I think this deal would benefit WSOF more than Bellator. Bellator is the more established company and their viewership ratings crush WSOF. What did they have to gain here?

    • Alex

      Well, the Alvarez/Melendez fight would’ve benefited Bellator more that it would’ve benefited Strikeforce, but Rebney still offered it, and said that it’s what MMA fans want.

      So now to diss the same offer from WSOF for him would be absolutely hypocritical.

      • Timothy Malone

        Oh you are right there is no doubt about the hypocrisy. It was always just about business strategy and it’s different now that the shoe is on the other foot.

        • Alex

          Well, you know, cooperating is part of the business too. It doesn’t have to be dog eat dog.

          WSOF cooperating with Pancrase – and even though Pancrase is ancient, they’re much smaller than WSOF right now, so they will benefit much more.

          See? It’s not necessary to try to beat other companies any given day, and it’s not necessary to be a liar, that makes himself look like he cares about the fans only when he can screw up another org – like Bjorn does.

  • David Huenecke

    Is it too far out of left field that maybe they combine their efforts? Bellator has spike and a growing medium. Wsof has nbc. Put fights on both spike and nbc and with the combined roster would actually be able to put on decent ppvs. Just cut mr.injury prone ortiz and call it bellator series of fighting. Just throwing it out there. And cut out seasonal fighting. Sure it sounds nice but to bust your ass all yr for 100,000 isnt that much.

    • Aimed with “v”

      “Sure it sounds nice but to bust your ass all yr for 100,000 isnt that much” –

      sure, as a cook in a Z-level restaurant you earn much more.

      • David Huenecke

        Thats kinda my point. Im a chef and i work in the restaurant biz and i make more than that. These dudes are professional fighters who go into the cage week after week and I make more than them. Thats why I quit fighting and went back to school to become a chef.

        • earlsimmons

          First off depending on where you live and job ya 100,000 is a huge amount. And second wtf does it matter if you make more being a chef? Are you saying they should get paid more because they go in a cage week after week? That makes no sense.

          • David Huenecke

            Actually that is the point. I make what i make and thats fine. But these guys get in a cage week after week. They risk personal injury and health problems that could otherwise keep them from competing. They deserve to be paid more than what they make considering the risks of their job. So by saying i dont make sense makes you sound like a fucki ng idiot. Go train for a day at any gym and tell me these guys dont deserve more if they win.

          • El Gvapo

            They do have a choice though. You can’t compare them to soldiers or fireman for example, people who genuinely deserve to earn far more than they get. There’s risk in all industry, you have the choice not to take part if they don’t like it. I’m sure more chefs have been seriously injured than fighters in fact.

          • El Gvapo

            The real discussion is how much the fighters make as a percentage of what the organisation make. I’m sure that in most mainstream sports the player makes plenty compared with the owner, not necessarily so in elite mma.

      • David Huenecke

        Also considering thats the grand prize. If you dont make it to and win finals who knows what these guys get

  • Matte

    On a more realistic note a thing line this would be hard to pull off so I kinda understand Rebney.

    Man, I would love such an event though. To bad it aint happening.

    They could also make a sensible deal benefit both parts. And get Bellator having a say in the match making aswell. My suggestion would be: let both organizations put forward any one fighter per weight class they want. And by all means, a super fight if it make sense.

    • Alex

      So it would be hard to pull off for Rebney but easy to pull off for Sefo?

      Give me a break, it could’ve been co-promotion and both orgs would’ve cooperated to create one single event.

  • AF613

    didnt this hypocrite call out dana and the UFC on multiple occasions?
    what a stupd ****.

    • Gary Fredericks

      My thought exactly!

  • Milosc

    “Bok bok Bok bok bok bok…”

  • mmalive

    Bjorn is AN IDIOT!!! If he wants to make a statement which organization is best go for the CHALLENGE!!! WSOF will SMOKE BELLATOR!!

  • drkdisciple

    I guess Bjorn has no time for this, he is focusing on getting Tito “120% healed” and telling uncle Dana how to deal with GSP.

  • Big Tuna

    He’ll extort, steal, and rob then focus on call outs