Former UFC heavyweight champion Frank Mir has announced that he’s signed for Bellator.
Mir recently negotiated his release from the UFC, but he still remains under suspension until April of 2018 after testing positive for oral turinabol metabolites, a banned performance enhancing drug, back in March of 2016 following a fight with Mark Hunt.
Nevertheless, Bellator were still more than happy to welcome the 38-year-old on board and it appears that they made the star the most lucrative offer.
“Out of all the organizations that came forward, it came down to two that were going to allow me to have my desire of not being locked into one organization,” Mir said on his ‘Phone Book Fighting’ podcast. “I did that with the UFC for almost 16 years. … It was coming down to Bellator and [Absolute Championship Berkut] who were both seeming to be very understanding of that fact, unless I was their champion.
“It came down to the financial aspect, obviously, who pays the most, and Bellator, with Viacom supporting them obviously, I’m getting paid more than I made with the UFC. I’m extremely excited to be part of the Bellator roster with Scott Coker. They have some very legitimate heavyweights over there. First and foremost on my mind is to fight Fedor [Emelianenko]. Hopefully that will work out. But it doesn’t close the door now that I could still go and fight now with ACB, who I have a contract with for commentary work.”
Mir arrives in the Bellator off the back of two losses in a row, with a defeat on the scorecards against Andrei Arlovski having been followed up by suffering a KO at the hands of Mark Hunt.
Looking through a wider lens, Mir’s form doesn’t look much better, having lost six of his last eight fights, with his two victories over the past five years having come against Todd Duffee and Antonio Silva.
Nevertheless, Mir remains a big name and he’ll join a Bellator heavyweight roster that includes the likes of Fedor Emelianenko, Matt Mitrione, Cheick Kongo, Roy Nelson and Sergei Kharitanov, so he won’t be short of potential opponents there.