Welterweight Rory MacDonald quits UFC and heads to Bellator

Welterweight moving to Bellator after UFC fails to match offer, and leaves with a record of 9-4 inside the octagon

Rory MacDonald, one of the top welterweight fighters in the world, is quitting UFC and heading to rival promoter Bellator.

MacDonalds management team was informed Tuesday night by the UFC that they were not able to match the terms of a contract offered by Bellator. No official announcement has been made, but the UFC has already removed him from their official welterweight rankings, where he held the No3 spot in the 170lb category.

MacDonald made his UFC debut in January 2010, and leaves with a 9-4 record inside the octagon. He lost out to Robbie Lawler in a dramatic welterweight title fight in July 2015, and then missed nearly a year of competition. He returned in June this year, but lost a unanimous decision to Stephen Thompson which gave him back-to-back losses for the first time.

FloCombat confirmed that the UFC decided not to match Bellators offer to MacDonald.

The 27-year-olds debut has yet to be decided, but sources say hes currently targeting a fight in the first quarter of 2017.

MacDonald recently became a first-time father and told Sportsnet Canada in June that fatherhood could affect any decision on his future.

Ive been doing a lot of thinking. Its given me a different approach as far as my concerns about my finances and stuff, MacDonald said. Before I wasnt too worried. I was comfortable with what I have. I was not a very rich kid growing up so I dont need a lot to be happy, but now that I have a daughter on the way [she was born in early July] I just want to have money for her so she can do what she wants, so shes comfortable and happy her whole life.

Read more: www.theguardian.com

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