Rizin 14 takes place at Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan, on Dec. 31, 2018 . Much of the hype to date has been regarding the on-again, off-again Floyd Mayweather fight against kickboxer Tenshin Nasukawa. While nothing is truly certain for “Money” Mayweather at this point, Bellator MMA and RIZIN have another “super fight” to announce.
Former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Flyweight contender Kyoji Horiguchi (25-2), currently in the midst of a 10-fight win streak since leaving the WME-IMG fold, will take on Bellator’s Bantamweight champion Darrion Caldwell (13-1) in a battle to determine RIZIN’s inaugural 135-pound champion.
At Bellator 204 in August, Caldwell made a successful return to the Featherweight class by defeating another former UFC fighter — “Neo” Noad Lahat. Even though the Israeli fighter is a superb submission expert, “The Wolf” took down Lahat with ease and finished him by knockout in round two.
That win would seem to put him on the path to eventually facing Patricio Freire, but Bellator President Scott Coker wants him to handle some business in Japan first.
“Bellator wants to support Rizin, and by sending our Bantamweight champion to compete during their New Year’s Eve event, we look forward to this leading towards more collaboration between the two promotions in 2019. I want to wish Darrion luck in his quest to prove he is the best 135-pound fighter on the planet.”
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