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UFC Vet John Alessio Headed to Bellator

Bellator MMA has reportedly added another well travelled and UFC veteran to its ranks, as John “The Natural” Alessio has announced he’s signed with the promotion. The signing comes less than one year removed from Alessio’s unanimous decision loss to Shane Roller at UFC 148, which prompted his release from the organization.

Speaking via his Facebook page, the 33 year-old vet stated:

I signed a contract!!!!!!!! ………………………………….I am now a BELLATOR MMA fighter, very excited for this new chapter in my fight career. Pumped to fight live on SPIKETV for all of you!!! I promise to always fight my heart out and do my best to put on a great show!!! Thanks to Bjorny Rebney for this opportunity.

According to a follow up report from MMA Junkie, Bellator officials have confirmed that Alessio has signed with the promotion and that he will make his debut during Season 9 this fall. The Canadian fighter is expected to compete at lightweight.

Alessio hasn’t competed since November, when he was accidentally poked in the eye by Dave Mazany while competing for the Aggression Fighting Championship and could not continue. The Vegas resident, who has been fighting since 1998 (which is crazy considering he’s 33), had gone 9-1 before returning to the UFC last year. At UFC 145 last April he was also handed a UD loss by Mark Bocek.

Today’s news comes just one day after Bellator announced that it had signed decorated wrestler and one of MMA’s top prospects, Bubba Jenkins. That’s a couple of nice additions to the Bellator roster.

Photo Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA Today

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