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Former RIZIN champion Kyoji Horiguchi signs with Bellator MMA

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Kyoji Horiguchi and Scott Coker
Bellator MMA

Kyoji Horiguchi has already found a new fighting home.

The former RIZIN and Bellator champion has ended his free agency after inking a multi-fight deal to join the roster at Bellator MMA.

Bellator president Scott Coker made the announcement Thursday.

“We have signed former Bellator bantamweight world champion Kyoji Horiguchi and I can’t wait to see him compete in our stacked bantamweight division,” Coker wrote on Twitter.

It was just a matter of days ago that Horiguchi relinquished his RIZIN bantamweight title after completing his contract with the Japanese promotion while declaring that he was testing the free agency market.

Horiguchi mentioned reigning Bellator bantamweight champion Sergio Pettis as an opponent he would be interested in facing, which obviously tipped his hand towards the promotion where he hoped to sign.

Now that deal is done as Horiguchi will return to compete primarily in the United States after spending the past four years serving as one of the faces for the Japan-based promotion.

Horiguchi previously held the Bellator bantamweight title after he defeated Darrion Caldwell by unanimous decision in 2019 in a crossover fight while he was still under contract to RIZIN. Unfortunately, Horiguchi was never able to defend the title after he suffered a torn ACL in his knee, which then required reconstructive surgery that put him out of action for over a year.

Now Horiguchi will attempt to win back the title he technically never lost as he joins the Bellator bantamweight division.