According to Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney, his promotion has been involved in talks with Sobral’s camp to sign the 36-9 submission specialist for a non-title bout with Lombard (30-2-1, 1 NC) at Bellator 58 on November 19, but nothing is set in stone. Strangely, the promoter still announced that the bout was in the works, which could simply be a tactic to pressure Babalu, who has only fought twice in the past two years, into signing on the dotted line.
“I’ve been a big ‘Babalu’ fan for a lot of years,” Rebney told MMAJunkie. “They weren’t really on our radar, but then they reached out to us and opened the door and asked for a few things. We agreed to all of them. … But now we’re siting back and waiting. We haven’t heard anything back from them in three or four days.”
Lombard says he’s ready and willing to fight Babalu and says that he has no problem fighting above his middleweight class for a fight of that caliber, in spite of the fact that he hasn’t fought at 205 in more than five years.
“I got a call from Bjorn … and he talked to me about the situation that ‘Babalu’ wanted to fight me. He wanted the fight at 205 pounds. I said, ‘I’m here to fight. Let’s just make the fight happen as soon as possible,’” Lombard explained. “It wouldn’t be one of the easiest fights of my career. But he’s got a good name.”
Let’s hope this isn’t another “We made the offer. Now the ball’s in Scott Coker’s court,” type of deal as was the case in the ballyhooed Gilbert Melendez and Eddie Alvarez bout that never happened. Babalu is a guy who always comes to fight, wherever the action goes and Lombard is a nasty fighter, so there’s a pretty good chance this bout could deliver. Don’t leave us hanging, Bjorn. Pick up the phone and get it done. Not like the Lombard-Filho bout we’re still waiting on. Okay, not really, but you get the picture.
The event, which is scheduled for the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Hollywood, Florida and will be broadcast on MTV2 will also feature the final round bouts from Bellator’s Season 5 tournament as well as the promotional debut of Shooto’s 183-pound South American champion, Carlos Alexandre Pereira.