AJ McKee Jr.’s first appearance as champion could be a rematch against two-time titleholder Patricio Pitbull. Bellator is hoping to make that matchup later this year, per a report from Ariel Helwani.
A second fight between McKee Jr. and Pitbull is reportedly being targeted for April. However, the promotion is also currently open to booking it for May as well, MMA Fighting’s Guilherme Cruz is reporting.
McKee Jr. defeated Pitbull last year, stopping him in the first round of a fight with a combination of strikes and a guillotine choke.
The result put an end to Pitbull’s dominant run at featherweight. His second reign as champ saw him first claim the belt in 2017 and defend his title five times before dropping it to McKee Jr. last year.
McKee Jr.’s win last year, which moved his record to an undefeated 18 wins, came in the finale of a 16-man featherweight tournament that Bellator kicked off in 2019.