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Rory MacDonald & Bellator reportedly close to deal

Rory MacDonald is reportedly leaving the UFC...or is, at least, close.

According to a report from FloCombat's Duane Finley, MacDonald will be joining Bellator after signing with the UFC competitor. MMA Fighting's Ariel Helwani reported that MacDonald is close to finalizing a deal.

MacDonald’s impending free agency had been a point of discussion as he entered the last fight on his UFC contract against Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson at UFC Fight Night 89 in June without signing a new contract.

A signing would represent one of the biggest acquisitions for Bellator to date as they look to gain footing and compete with the UFC. MacDonald was recently removed from the fighter rankings on the UFC’s website.

MacDonald, a welterweight, is 18-4 in his career, with all four losses coming in the UFC after he joined the promotion in 2010. He’s coming off of two straight losses after losing to Thompson by unanimous decision in June and losing to Robbie Lawler at UFC 189 in a fight that won MMA Match of the Year in the 2015 Observer awards.

His other two losses were against Lawler at UFC 167 and against Carlos Condit at UFC 115.