The Bellator cage is heading to the iconic Saitama Super Arena in Japan for a huge summer event as Bellator and Rizin FF team up for a super show on July 30.
Bellator vs. Rizin 2 will mark the launch of Bellator’s new men’s flyweight division, with the inaugural championship bout set to play a starring role on a packed fight card.
The newly-instituted championship will be contested by former Bellator and Rizin bantamweight champion Kyoji Horiguchi, and fellow countryman Makoto Takahashi, who heads into the matchup on a 10-fight win streak.
Also set for action in Saitama is a quarter-final clash from the Bellator Lightweight World Grand Prix, as former featherweight champion AJ McKee takes on former lightweight king Patricky Pitbull for a spot in the tournament semi-finals.
There is also a women’s flyweight bout featuring Bellator’s Japanese contender Kana Watanabe, who takes on Veta Arteaga in a 125-pound clash.
Also scheduled to compete on the card are former Rizin Lightweight Grand Prix champion Tofiq Musayev, and former Bellator bantamweight champion Juan Archuleta, whose love for Japan during his appearance on New Year’s Eve last year endeared him to the Saitama fans.
His victory over Soo Chul Kim and passionate post-fight speech to the crowd earned him a repeat visit to the Land of the Rising Sun as he returned to compete under the Rizin banner at Rizin 42, where he claimed a unanimous decision win over Naoki Inoue. Now he’s back for his third consecutive appearance on Japanese soil as he challenges hard-champion Kai Asakura for the Rizin FF bantamweight title.
Asakura’s brother, Mikuru, is also slated to compete as he faces Vugar Karomov.
More bouts are set to be announced in due course as both promotions work together to stack the deck for a huge event on July 30.
Bellator vs. Rizin 2: Confirmed bouts
- AJ McKee vs. Patricky Pitbull – Bellator Lightweight Grand Prix quarter-final bout
- Kyoji Horiguchi vs. Makoto Takahashi – for inaugural Bellator flyweight title
- Kai Asakura vs. Juan Archuleta – for Rizin FF bantamweight title
- Mikuru Asakura vs. Vugar Karomov
- Kana Watanabe vs. Veta Artega