Former UFC welterweight title contender Rory MacDonald recently inked a deal with rival promotion Bellator MMA. His teammate and former UFC champion Georges St-Pierre believes his friend made the right move.
“I am very happy for Rory,” St-Pierre told UPROXX.com. “I think it’s a great move for him. He chose the best option for himself and his family. I wish him the best.”
MacDonald finished out his UFC contract with back-to-back losses to then-champion Robbie Lawler and No. 1 contender Stephen Thompson. He was still under a matching period with the UFC, but in Bellator’s most recent offer, the MMA juggernaut opted not to vie for MacDonald’s services. His signing with his new employer was announced during the broadcast for Friday night’s Bellator 160.
Addressing his signing, MacDonald said his decision to leave was simply because Bellator made him an offer than no one else could match.
“There’s many reasons, but straight up, though, Bellator gave me an offer that nobody in the world could match. They’re giving me an opportunity here that nobody else can do for me. They believe in me, and I’m here to put on a show,” he said.
MacDonald has his sights set on not only 170-pound champion Andrey Koreshkov, he’s also eyeing the middleweight division.
“I’m taking over. I’m the king of this division at 170. I’m going after Koreshkov and his belt. After that, I’ve got my eye on 185 too.”
With St-Pierre also saying he intends on returning to the UFC, despite them now being under contract with competing promotions, St-Pierre and MacDonald still intend to train together.
“We’re going to train together still,” said St-Pierre. “I’m very happy for him. He found a new home to make more money and, if the conditions of work are better, I’m happy. I’m all for that.”
St-Pierre is still in negotiations with the UFC with no set timetable for his return. MacDonald, recovering from multiple occasions of a broken nose, isn’t likely to make his Bellator debut until 2017.