Bellator Signs Xtreme Couture-Trained Fighter Jay Hieron

Yael GrauerCorrespondent INovember 16, 2010

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - APRIL 04: Jay Hieron celebrates his win against Mark Miller at the International Fighting League at the Izod Center in East Rutherford, New Jersey on April 4, 2008.  (Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images)
Nick Laham/Getty Images

Bellator Fighting Championships continues snatching up talent left and right, and the newest addition to their Season Four Welterweight Tournament is Xtreme Couture-trained fighter Jay "Thoroughbred" Hieron.

A top contender in his weight class, Hieron holds a professional record of 19-4, including six (T)KOs and five submissions. He is currently on a seven-fight winning streak.

Hieron has fought for Strikeforce and Affliction and even for the UFC in 2004 and 2005. He was the welterweight champion of the now-defunct IFL.

"The Thoroughbred" has a strong wrestling background, and his opponents probably wish they were wearing MMA headgear.

He holds notable wins over Jake Ellenberger, Jesse Taylor, Jason High, Pat Healy and Joe Riggs.

Hieron was kept on the sidelines at Strikeforce for many months before they finally released him, and he spread the news via Twitter.

“I finally got my release from Strikeforce… Y’all know what I’m about to do! I have been through a lot of sh*t this past year but I have trained the whole time. So all welterweights take notice – I’m coming for somebody’s head,” he wrote.

Hieron joins six very tough competitors in the tournament lineup: Dan Hornbuckle, Rick Hawn, Steve Carl, Chris Lozano, "Judo" Jim Wallhead and Brent Weedman.

The winner of the tournament, which is slated for 2011, will face former Olympic wrestler and current welterweight champion Ben Askren.