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UFC alum Yoel Romero of ATT to make Bellator MMA debut on Showtime. Could boxing be next?

·4 min read

With Vitor Belfort, Conor McGregor, Tito Ortiz, Anderson Silva, Tyron Woodley already testing themselves in boxing, could Yoel Romero do the same at some point?

Maybe.

He is interested, but currently his focus is still MMA, and Bellator MMA is glad.

Yoel Romero versus Phil Davis is a very interesting MMA match-up, and Bellator signed it, and it’s here.

The two standout UFC alums will battle in a light heavyweight main event for Bellator 266 on Saturday on Showtime from the SAP Center in San Jose, California.

Romero, originally from Cuba, is residing with his family in Miami. He trains there, too, under the prestigious American Top Team banner.

Here is my audio interview with Yoel Romero as he discusses his Bellator MMA debut, competing in two divisions, Cuba, UFC, American Top Team, boxing & more.

Romero and Davis are accomplished amateur wrestlers with outstanding MMA credentials.

Romero, 44, is 13-5 with many exciting MMA fights under his belt in UFC as a middleweight. This “Soldier of God” plans to compete in the middleweight and light heavyweight divisions in Bellator. A five-time medalist in amateur wrestling’s World Championships and six-time World Cup medalist, he won a silver medal wrestling for Cuba at the Olympics in 2000.

Romero trains MMA in Miami under the American Top Team banner.

In his last fight, Romero lost in March 2020 to Israel Adesanya by unanimous decision for the UFC middleweight title at UFC 248.

A Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, native, Davis, 36, is 22-6 with many exciting MMA fights to his credit. He proudly wears the nickname Mr. Wonderful, named after the late, great pro wrestler “Mr. Wonderful” Paul Orndorff.

Davis is a decorated amateur wrestler. An NCAA Division I national champion for Penn State, he is a four-time All American.

In his last fight Davis lost in April to Vadim Nemkov by unanimous decision at Bellator 257.

Phil Davis during a Bellator MMA 266 Media Conference Call Q&A.

Circling back to boxing.

Romero can not only wrestler, but he can box. It’s part of his DNA. His younger brother, Yoan Pablo Hernández, was pro boxing’s IBF cruiserweight champion.

Romero defected to Germany in 2007 and has been residing in Miami. He still has family in Cuba.

Yoel Romero during a Bellator MMA 266 Media Conference Call Q&A.

Romero and Davis own victories over a very tough Lyoto Machida, a former UFC light heavyweight champ. Davis beat him in Bellator and UFC.

Yoel Romero of Miami via Cuba beat former lightweight champ Lyoto Machida of Brazil in their middleweight fight during “UFC Fight Night” on June 27, 2015 on FOX Sports 1 from Hard Rock Live at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in South Florida, near Hollywood. Romero, who makes his Bellator debut Saturday, Sept. 18, trains with American Top Team in South Florida.
Yoel Romero of Miami via Cuba beat former lightweight champ Lyoto Machida of Brazil in their middleweight fight during “UFC Fight Night” on June 27, 2015 on FOX Sports 1 from Hard Rock Live at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in South Florida, near Hollywood. Romero, who makes his Bellator debut Saturday, Sept. 18, trains with American Top Team in South Florida.

BELLATOR MMA 266

Davis vs. Romero Main Card

Saturday, September 18 – live on SHOWTIME

10 p.m. ET/ 7 p.m. PT

Light heavyweight main event: No. 3 Phil Davis (22-6) vs. Yoel Romero (13-5)

Welterweight bout: No. 4 Neiman Gracie (10-2) vs. Mark Lemminger (12-3)

Flyweight bout: No. 5 Alejandra Lara (9-4) vs. DeAnna Bennett (10-7-1)

Lightweight bout: Georgi Karakhanyan (31-11-1, 1 NC) vs. Saul Rogers (14-4)

Light heavyweight bout: No. 10 Christian Edwards (4-0) vs. Ben Parrish (4-1)

Preliminary card

BELLATOR MMA YouTube Channel | SHOWTIME Sports YouTube Channel | Pluto TV

7 p.m. ET/ 4 p.m. PT

Light heavyweight bout: No. 7 Grant Neal (6-0) vs. Alex Polizzi (8-1)

Middleweight bout: Khalid Murtazaliev (15-2) vs. Anthony Adams (8-2)

175-pound contract weight bout: Abraham Vaesau (5-3, 1 NC) vs. Albert Gonzales (2-2)

Bantamweight bout: Socrates Hernandez (pro debut) vs. Pedro Juarez (pro debut)

Bantamweight bout: Bobby Seronio III (pro debut) vs. Erin Hunter (pro debut)

Welterweight bout: Rhalan Gracie (0-2) vs. Shane Keefe (1-0)

160-pound contract weight bout: Eddie Abasolo (pro debut) vs. Art Hernandez (4-5, 1 NC)

Flyweight bout: Edwin De Los Santos (pro debut) vs. Jon Adams (0-1-1)

130-pound contract weight bout: Jesse Delgado (pro debut) vs. Joshua Dillon (1-1)

Card subject to change.

Visit www.Bellator.com for additional information.

https://mmajunkie.usatoday.com/lists/bellator-266-pre-event-facts-yoel-romro-debut-resume-ufc-main-event-phil-davis

https://www.espn.com/mma/story/_/id/32014956/sources-yoel-romero-make-delayed-bellator-debut-phil-davis

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