The card will remain a pay-per-view offering, however, with Will Brooks stepping in for Alvarez to face Chandler. Whereas Alvarez vs. Chandler was going to be for Alvarez’s Bellator lightweight championship, Chandler and Brooks will battle for an interim lightweight belt.
“It’s remaining on pay-per-view because it’s a pay-per-view worthy card,” said Rebney, while pointing to the questionable nature of Alvarez’s recovery time as reason for making an interim championship bout.
The withdrawal of Alvarez has been a little over a week in the making. Alvarez’s manager notified Bellator, according to Rebney, late last week that his fighter hit his head on a training partner’s hip while working out and was experiencing some dizziness, but had hoped to recover in time for the pay-per-view on May 17.
By Tuesday, May 6, Alvarez was back to training full cardio and was about 70-percent healthy overall, while still experience some dizziness. On Friday, May 9, however, there had been no improvement from Tuesday’s progress. Saturday morning, Alvarez finally had to withdraw from the fight in order to give Bellator enough time to make alternate plans.
The alternate plan was pulling Season 9 tournament winner Will Brooks from his Bellator 120 main card fight with Nate Jolly and inserting him into the interim title fight opposite Chandler. Jolly’s status for the card remains undecided at the time of publication.
In addition to the change at the top of the card, the Bellator Season 10 heavyweight tournament final between Blagoi Ivanov and Alexander Volkov will move from the Spike TV prelims onto the main card on pay-per-view.