When former Bellator lightweight champ Eddie Alvarez’s contract expired it appeared his presence in the UFC would be a foregone conclusion. Long seen as one of the sport’s top 155ers, Alvarez has never had an opportunity to prove himself on MMA’s grandest stage or enjoy the financial benefits of being in a bigger spotlight.

Though the UFC did in fact make Alvarez an offer, it appears Bellator officials have enacted the right to match it as stated by his previous deal with the promotion. No specific terms have been made public and it is unknown if Alvarez will accept the terms or the UFC will increase the ante.

The development was reported by MMAJunkie, citing sources close to the negotiation. It is believed Alvarez’s camp is currently looking over all the paperwork before making any concrete moves.

The 24-3 Alvarez is coming off consecutive finishes of Shinya Aoki and Patricky Freire. He also holds past wins over the likes of Josh Neer, Tatsuya Kawajiri, and Roger Huerta.