Many felt Bellator lightweight champion Eddie Alvarez was the victim during his 10-month contract dispute with the company last year, when Bellator refused to let "The Silent Assassin" take his talents to the UFC.
Apparently, a high-ranking World Series of Fighting official saw the series of events in the same way, but he had a unique way of stating it.
On a conference call on Thursday, WSOF vice president Ali Abdelaziz suggested that Alvarez ruined Bellator with his contract dispute, comparing it to a similar situation that WSOF may endure with top light heavyweight Anthony Johnson, per MMA Mania:
Eddie Alvarez single-handedly ruined one promotion because all this drama and nasty things that happened. He ruined some people's careers. I believe he ruined this promotion because they can't sign anyone because of one guy. Why would I force a guy to be with me if he doesn't want to be with me? You have to understand, the fan is always going to go with the fighters, if the fighter is right, and Eddie was right...If Anthony (Johnson's) contract is over and he want to go and fight in different place...Guess what? I'm going to give him a big huge hug and say good luck and wish him the best of luck. This is 2014. We're not boxing or different sports. If somebody have a dream to fight wherever you call it, the UFC, whatever...Who am I as a human being an individual, from keeping him from achieving his dreams?
Alvarez lost the 155-pound strap to Michael Chandler in a "Fight of the Year" contender at Bellator 58 in November 2011, but he bounced back with consecutive knockouts over Shinya Aoki and Patricky Freire.
After 13 months on the shelf, the Philadelphia native shocked the world by beating Chandler in a rematch in November at Bellator 106. The 25-minute instant classic arguably surpassed their first bout.
The bout was so epic that Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney stated at the post-fight press conference that Alvarez vs. Chandler III would be the next lightweight title fight, per MMA Junkie.
As far as WSOF goes, Johnson headlines WSOF 8 next week against Mike Kyle in the last bout on his contract.
However, the company has attempted to sweeten the pot by guaranteeing "Rumble" a shot at its inaugural light heavyweight title if he re-signs, per MMA Fighting.
Since being cut from the UFC in January 2012, Johnson has rattled off five straight wins, with three knockouts.
Did Abdelaziz hit the nail on the head, or are his views on Alvarez's contract dispute with Bellator a little off base?
Like the new article format? Send us feedback!