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Roy Nelson eyes rematch with Matt Mitrione and ‘dream fight’ with Fedor Emelianenko next

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MMA: Bellator 183-Nelson vs Ayala Dave Mandel-USA TODAY Sports

LONDON — Scott Coker confirmed that Roy Nelson claimed the alternate position for Bellator’s heavyweight Grand Prix by default following Mirko Cro Cop’s forced withdrawal from their London showdown at Bellator 200.

Speaking after getting the news, Nelson said he would happily step in if an opportunity presents itself, and if not, “Big Country” will look to challenge for the title as soon as the winner of the tournament is crowned heavyweight champion.

“[The tournament] is interesting,” Nelson told MMA Fighting. “There are a lot of things that have happened that I didn’t see coming. I can’t wait to see how it pans out. If someone pulls out, I’ll step in for them, and if not, I’ll wait and fight the person who becomes the first champion.”

Considering the bracket as it stands, Nelson insisted that Matt Mitrione was the only person that he really wanted to fight and described a meeting with Fedor Emelianenko as a “dream fight.”

“The only person out of all of them that I really want to fight is Matt, just to get that fourth round," Nelson said. "The only thing after that I can think of would be a dream fight with Fedor. Those are the only heavyweights left, the rest of the guys are 205ers.”

He insisted that all the fighters that put themselves forward to replace Cro Cop already had a contract with different promotions.

“Everyone that said they wanted to fight were tied up in their own contracts whether that’s ONE Championship or whoever else they fight for,” Nelson said. “I think of a lot of these guys are just doing it to generate a bit of publicity for themselves.”