One of Bellator’s biggest stars over the past decade is now a free agent.
Michael ‘Venom’ Page announced on The MMA Hour that his contract with Bellator has now run its course, and he is about to explore the free-agent market, with a number of options on the table.
“I am currently unemployed!” Page told Ariel Helwani.
“I think it’s time for me to just explore what else is out there. It doesn’t mean I’m not going to go back with Bellator. It just means I want to see what other people think of ‘MVP.’”
Page explained that his new-found free agency came as something of a surprise.
“I think all of us missed it,” said Page.
“Weirdly enough, I think it’s just one of those ones that we just all missed. (The win over Goiti Yamauchi) was an exciting, quick fight. I was actually eager to try and get something going again.
“Obviously they were sorting out their own shows and getting that in place, but nobody really looked at contracts until we were like, ‘OK, what’s the next move?’ And I think it was Audie (Attar, Page’s manager) or one of the guys on the team was like, ‘Oh yeah, you’re up.’ So it’s quite an interesting situation.”
Page also suggested that the uncertainty around Bellator as an entity may have played into the promotion missing the opportunity to tie him down earlier.
“They’re normally a lot sharper on that, and even usually when you’ve still got a few fights left, they’re already talking about what the progression is,” he explained.
“So I think there’s a lot going on in the back office with their potential transition as well, and new owners, and so on and so forth. So yeah, I definitely feel like they kind of missed something there.
“But I think things happen for a reason, in my opinion. I think it all happened for me to be able to have this space now and to make this decision, to actually say to myself, ‘OK cool, let me explore the waters in the MMA ocean and see see what bites.'”
With UFC, PFL and other fighting organizations from other disciplines likely to be interested in Page’s unique fighting style, the Englishman is likely to have plenty of offers to ponder over the coming months.