Bellator has answered the UFC's offer for its former lightweight champion, Eddie Alvarez. Though no specifics on Bellator's offer have been released, it's apparent the organization is willing to stand toe-to-toe with the world's premier MMA promotion.
The ball now appears to be in Alvarez's court, but neither he nor his agent seem to be ready to make an immediate decision.
Negotiations on Alvarez's future were far from the only news to be released over the past 24 hours, so let's take a look at what you may have missed.
Bellator Counters UFC Contract Offer to Eddie Alvarez—Negotiations regarding Eddie Alvarez's future employer took a step forward, with Bellator taking advantage of its right to match opposing offers for the free agent's services (via MMAJunkie.com). A former Bellator lightweight champion, Alvarez is the hottest competitor on the market right now, though both organizations still await his decision.
Anderson Silva Could Defend Belt Three Times Before Potential Superfights—UFC president Dana White has said Anderson Silva could fight three more times before being matched up with welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre (via MMAWeekly.com). Supposedly, that would give St-Pierre time to get back into the swing of things following his long hiatus due to injury. With Silva turning 38 years old in April, it's starting to look like the UFC is leading its fans along with these proposed superfights.
UFC Will Pay Mike Dolce to Help Cristiane Santos Make Bantamweight—The UFC brass is willing to pick up the bill should "Cyborg" accept nutritionist Mike Dolce's services to help her cut to 135 pounds in a healthy way (via Tatame.com). If Santos can make it to bantamweight, it could set up the biggest fight in women's MMA history between herself and UFC champion Ronda Rousey.
Dana White Still Deciding on Josh Barnett's Future—Though Josh Barnett has won eight of his past nine fights and became recognized as one of the best heavyweights under the Strikeforce banner, White is not committing to the idea of signing the veteran to a UFC contract (via MMAWeekly.com). Should Barnett win his final Strikeforce fight against Nandor Guelmino, he'd add some good depth to the UFC's shallow heavyweight roster.
Vitor Belfort Can't Earn Title Shot Against Michael Bisping—Though Michael Bisping could earn the first title shot of his career by beating Vitor Belfort at UFC on FX 7, the same stakes won't be on the line for the Brazilian (via MMAWeekly.com). Considering Belfort was brutally knocked out in his first fight with champion Anderson Silva, it's really not a surprise that he'll need to put together a significant winning streak to earn another shot at the belt.
UFC 156—Jay Hieron vs. Tyron Woodley (via MMAJunkie.com)
UFC on FX 7—Edson Barboza vs. Lucas Martins (via MMAJunkie.com)
Strikeforce: Marquardt vs. Saffiedine—Pat Healy vs. Kurt Holobaugh (via MMAJunkie.com)
Bellator 85—Jason Lambert vs. Hector Ramirez (via MMAJunkie.com)
Video of the Day
Liz Carmouche believes the UFC is rooting for Ronda Rousey, and she's okay with that. (viaMMAFighting.com)
Tweet of the Day
Fans at the airport welcome new champion Cain Velasquez back home... with mariachisyoutu.be/KG2dECRNU3w— UFC (@ufc) January 2, 2013
Comment of the Day
"I agree that JDS needs a fight first before a rematch, but I am pretty confident he won't get dominated in the rematch. He was easily stuffing Cain's takedowns 'til he ate that big punch, which was a huge turning point in the fight. Who knows what would have happened if Cain didn't land that punch. You can say the same for their first fight as well. The big difference is JDS has a proven jaw where Cain doesn't. Can't wait to see what happens when they fight again, as we know JDS will make adjustments making for a another interesting fight. I can see these guys fighting 4 or 5 times which is great for us fans."