Photo by Dave Mandel for Sherdog
Photo by Dave Mandel for Sherdog

After having two of his four straight wins inside the UFC overturned due to testing positive for marijuana within the last year, Matt Riddle was released from the organization in February.

Riddle (7-3, 2 NC) then signed with Texas-based promotion Legacy Fighting Championships, but his contract has since been bought out by Bellator MMA in what is being referred to as “a long-term promotional agreement”. Riddle will now take part in Bellator’s Season 9 Welterweight Tournament this Fall.

“I had so many options after I left the UFC, but knowing that I was able to compete in a tournament against guys like Paul Daley, Ben Saunders, and Douglas Lima, signing with Bellator was an easy decision,” Riddle said. “This division is just so stacked, and being able to fight in a tournament makes it even better. Bellator is doing a lot of great things right now, and I want to be a part of it.”

Bellator CEO & Chairman Bjorn Rebney understands there are risks involved with signing Riddle considering his past issues with marijuana.  “But having discussed it with him, I’m comfortable that he’s in the right place to enter the Bellator cage this fall in what will be the most loaded Bellator Welterweight Tournament in the promotions history,” Rebney said.

In addition to fighting, Riddle seems to have his heart set on some of the perks that come along with being part of the Bellator MMA family.  “No questions asked, I want to win the next Bellator Welterweight Tournament, get my shot at the title and take my beautiful wife to the MTV Awards and meet Snoop Dogg,” Riddle commented. “I’ve seen all the pictures of Bellator guys walking red carpets and it’s something I want to earn and be able to do. What could be better than that?”

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