UFC Contender Chris Weidman Almost Signed with Bellator Before Contract Betrayal

McKinley Noble@KenTheGreat1Correspondent IMay 21, 2013

July 11, 2012; San Jose, CA, USA; Mark Munoz (bottom) fights Chris Weidman (top) during the middleweight bout of the UFC on Fuel TV at HP Pavilion. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports
Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Bellator MMA is currently fighting to keep Eddie Alvarez on their roster, but he's not the only top talent that's had contract issues with the company.

According to The New York Post, Chris Weidman very nearly found himself trapped in a Bellator contract of his own.

Back in 2011, just after an undefeated two-year four-fight stint in Ring of Combat, Weidman nearly signed up with the minor league MMA promotion, which was just about to run three back-to-back-to-back seasons on MTV2.

Fortunately for Weidman, he said that a last-minute glance at the paperwork revealed a clause in the contract that could've extended it "to three or four years"—despite the fact that Bellator allegedly told the All-American wrestling star it would be a maximum of two years:

I felt like I was betrayed by them. They never told me that. It was a little sneaky.

I was so upset. I was so let down. I was excited to go to Bellator... Everything happens for a reason. Thank God I took my time and didn't just rush into it.

And as they say, the rest is history.

Weidman's refusal to sign with Bellator paved the way for his UFC debut against Alessio Sakara in March 2011, which was quickly followed by a four-fight winning steak over Mark Munoz, Demian Maia, Tom Lawlor and Jesse Bongfeldt.

Now, Weidman is scheduled to challenge Anderson Silva for the UFC Middleweight Championship, despite having fewer professional MMA bouts than "The Spider" has title defenses.

That match goes down during the main event of UFC 162 on July 6 at Las Vegas' MGM Grand Garden Arena, where Weidman will attempt to become the very first fighter to ever hand Silva a defeat inside the UFC Octagon.

If Weidman does pull out a victory, it'll be on the short list for the greatest upset in MMA history.

However, the betting books are giving the champion surprisingly low odds at retaining his title (via BestFightOdds), where Silva opened as a relatively small 4-to-1 favorite.


McKinley Noble is an MMA conspiracy theorist. His work has appeared in NVisionPC World, Macworld, GamePro, 1UP, MMA Mania and The L.A. Times.