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Scott Coker: Eddie Alvarez to Bellator ‘doesn’t seem likely at this point’

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If you hoped that free agent Eddie Alvarez would return to Bellator MMA and perhaps have a trilogy fight with Michael Chandler, you’re in for disappointment.

Bellator CEO Scott Coker told MMA Fighting at Bellator 206 media day on Thursday that the chances of the former UFC and Bellator lightweight champion ending up returning to his old Bellator stomping grounds don’t look so hot.

“It doesn’t seem likely at this point,” Coker said.

Alvarez was the face of Bellator in the Bjorn Rebney era going all the way back to Bellator 1 in 2009. He was a two-time 155-pound champion, splitting a sensational pair of title bouts with Chandler along the way, which helped legitimatize the company’s roster as big league.

But the Philadelphia native butted heads with former CEO Rebney and ultimately ended up in a litigation with the company. In Aug. 2014, Coker, soon after taking over the reins, released Alvarez from his contract.

From there, Alvarez went on to win the UFC lightweight title, scoring a first-round knockout of Rafael dos Anjos to win the belt on July 7, 2016. He dropped the belt three months later to Conor McGregor at UFC 205 at Madison Square Garden.

Alvarez took a gamble going into the last fight of his UFC contract and lost a wild bout with Dustin Poirier in Calgary in July. And while Coker said his company did meet with Alvarez, nothing come out of it to indicate the free agent would sign with Bellator.

“I think that they had a conversation with Eddie and I’m not sure where it’s at,” Coker said. “But I don’t think it took a second, it wasn’t like it was something that was picking up any steam so I’m not sure.”