(They can put you behind bars. They can fire you for being an idiot. But damn it, they’ll never take your sense of joy.)
On June 19th, War Machine (formerly known as Jon Koppenhaver) will finally make his Bellator debut, when he faces WEC veteran Blas Avena at Bellator 96. The fight will come four-and-a-half years after the short-fused welterweight was first signed by Bellator back in early 2009. Let’s just say their schedules haven’t matched up since then.
First, Machine was fired by Bellator for suggesting that President Obama — and every president after him — should be assassinated. Then, he embarked on a brief but rewarding career in porn which ended in a punch-up at a birthday party. Then, he spent a year in jail for one of his various assault charges. Then he had to go back to jail for one of his various assault charges, which led to the cancellation of a scheduled fight against Karl Amoussou. Then, he had to pull out of his next scheduled fight against Paul Daley due to a partially torn ACL, which pretty much takes us to the present day.
Now that War Machine is all healed up, he’ll allegedly be making his Bellator debut on the promotion’s 2013 Summer Series premiere on Spike TV, assuming he doesn’t beat up another civilian, or sustain another training injury, or get cut again for simply expressing his honest thoughts. Machine hasn’t competed since his TKO win over Roger Huerta in November 2011, while Avena recently snapped a two-year winless streak by TKO’ing Lenny Lovato at Bellator 91 in February.
Can War Machine rebuild his career in the #2 MMA promotion? And what the hell kind of name is “Blas,” anyway?