A.J. McKee has extended his career with Bellator by signing a contract that includes multiple fights and multiple years with the promotion. That rules out the possibility of seeing him fight in the UFC or any other promotion in the near future.
The former featherweight champion kicked off his career as a professional mixed martial artist in 2015 by competing against Marcos Bonilla at the Bellator 136 event. Since then, he has become one of the promotion’s most iconic figures.
A.J. McKee is staying put, as he signs a new multi-fight deal with Bellator. 💰
— MMA Junkie (@MMAJunkie) January 10, 2023
The current No. 3 pound-for-pound fighter in the world has competed in 21 bouts for Bellator, winning 20 and losing just once. His most recent fight took place in the highly anticipated Bellator vs. Rizin event, and it was against Roberto de Souza, who holds the title of Rizin Lightweight Champion. The fight was decided by a unanimous decision in favor of McKee.
The Mercenary’s previous contract with the promotion ended with a fight, but Bellator President Scott Coker recently confirmed that the Mercenary will continue to promote the brand saying, “Our top priority has always been to cultivate talent from the ground up, and with AJ [McKee] I can proudly say we have witnessed this young man blossom into a bona fide superstar in the BELLATOR cage,” said President Scott Coker.
Bellator MMA just sent out a release it has re-signed AJ McKee to a new "multi-year" contract. President Scott Coker also says McKee will be featured in the 2023 lightweight grand prix. McKee vs. current champ Usman Nurmagomedov would be real interesting.
— Brett Okamoto (@bokamotoESPN) January 10, 2023
“It’s also our priority to retain top talent, and with AJ entering the prime of his career, it was important to make sure he continued representing the BELLATOR brand, much like he did recently in Japan, for the foreseeable future. I am looking forward to AJ’s next challenge, an appearance in our 2023 BELLATOR Lightweight World Grand Prix, which showcases the best 155-pounders in the world.” President Scott added.
McKee, the 27-year-old fighter, was nearly signed with UFC, but with his new multi-year deal with Bellator, fans can look forward to seeing him win the Lightweight Grand Prix in July.