Rory MacDonald Wanted Title Shot, but Settles for Paul Daley in Enemy Territory

Former UFC welterweight title challenger Rory MacDonald signed with Bellator MMA in August 2016 and makes his promotional debut at Bellator 179 against Paul Daley on May 19 in London. 

Daley called out MacDonald following his knockout win over Brennan Ward at Bellator 170 on Jan. 21. MacDonald quickly accepted the challenge to face the Englishman.     

“They offered it to me. I took about a week to think about it. And then I told them that I would accept it after a couple of days of thinking,” said the Canadian during a recent appearance on The MMA Hour.

MacDonald was hoping to secure a title fight in his Bellator debut, but decided to take the opportunity to face Daley in enemy territory.  He believes the bout will determine a top contender.

“That’s what I was pushing for (a title shot), and it was looking like that. It’s all about timing, and this is a No. 1 contender fight. It’s possible that my very next fight will be for the title. If not, I’ll probably fight at 185 or something like that just to stay busy in between waiting for the champ,” he said. 

“I’ll probably be the enemy over there. I’ll probably get some boos and stuff, but hopefully I can win over the crowd with a good fight,” MacDonald added. 

When MacDonald signed his name on the Bellator contract, he knew that he and Daley would eventually meet inside the cage; it would happen sooner or later.  It’s going to happen sooner.   

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“He’s a guy that I knew that I was going to come across sooner or later in Bellator. If that’s what the hot fight is right now, then let’s do it,” he said. 

Every fighter debuting in an organization wants to make a statement.  MacDonald is not different.  He wants to walk into the Bellator cage against Daley in May and prove something. 

“I want to prove a point. I’m going in there to prove a point, to show people what’s up and who I really am. I think they’re going to see a big change, and they’re going to be happily surprised.”

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