Coenen and Budd will fight for the title in the featured preliminary bout at Bellator 155: Carvalho vs. Manhoef, which takes place on May 20 at CenturyLink Arena in Boise, Idaho. MMAWeekly.com confirmed the news with Bellator officials, following an initial report by BleacherReport.com.
Coenen (23-6) moved from Invicta FC over to Bellator following her second career loss to Cris “Cyborg” Justino in July of 2013. She has since won back-to-back bouts over Annalisa Bucci and Arlene Blencowe, submitting both. That has put her in position to vie for the first Bellator women’s featherweight belt.
Having fought professionally since 2000, if she is successful on May 20, the Bellator belt would be the second major title of the 34-year-old fighter’s career.
Thrity-two-year-old Budd (8-2) is currently on a six-fight winning streak that extends back to her time fighting for Invicta FC. She won four out of four fights for the all-woman fight promotion before following Coenen to Bellator in 2015. Like the former Strikeforce champion, Budd has won both of her fights under the Bellator banner, making for a solid title fight.
Bellator 155 features Rafael Carvalho putting his middleweight championship on the line against Melvin Manhoef, while the co-main event pits former featherweight champ Pat Curran fighting for the first time in nearly a year, when he faces Georgi Karakhanyan.
(CORRECTION: Coenen and Budd are fighting for the featherweight championship, not the bantamweight title, as first reported.)