When news broke last week that Stephan Bonnar had signed with Bellator MMA and was set to return to the cage, some wondered if that meant there was issues between Bonnar and the UFC.
Dana White cleared that up during a recent media scrum, letting it be known that he cleared the way for the UFC Hall of Fame fighter to head to Bellator for one simple reason: beat up Tito Ortiz.
Bonnar and Ortiz have exchanged words in the past, and now they appear set for a future collision.
“I released him to do it,” White said. “He was still under contract with us. We released him to do it and I wish him the best. What he told me is that he wants to beat the (expletive) out of Tito.
“I’m always down for that, so I released him.”
Bonnar last fought in 2012, falling to Anderson Silva. He tested positive for banned substances during the post-fight drug test, but still was inducted into the hall of fame in 2013 alongside Forrest Griffin. The two had an epic battle to conclude the first season of The Ultimate Fighter.
Prior to signing with Bellator, Bonnar had been working as an analyst with Titan FC. The Bellator release stating his hiring also mentioned possible work in the booth for the company.