With Cole Konrad announcing his retirement from MMA, the heavyweight division in Bellator just opened up wide for a potential newcomer.

In a promotion where the champions are heavily questioned, it was another blow to Bellator, which already finds its other champions, namely Eduardo Dantas, failing to live up to the hype outside of the Bellator banner.

The heavyweight division outside of the UFC is weak, as most of the top talent competes for the mega-promotion. Even with the weak heavyweight division, Bellator is still going to push forward with the division and try to revive it with a new tournament to decide the next Bellator heavyweight champion.

Right now, this idea doesn’t seem to be the brightest moving forward for Bellator. There isn’t anyone in the heavyweight division fighting out of the UFC right now that is able to draw in eyeballs. Even before Konrad’s seemingly sudden exit, he was dominating the division and seemed to be leaps and bounds ahead of the rest of the fighters on the roster. Now, the talent seems average at best.

The only name in the next tournament that fans may recognize is Brett Rogers. Is Rogers really the guy you want as the most recognizable figure of your division? After all, this is the same guy who has only won twice in his last seven outings and was released by Strikeforce after assaulting his wife.

Outside of Rogers, the field consists of his quarterfinal round opponent Alexander Volkov, UFC veterans Vinicius Queiroz and Mike Wessel, and previous tournament participants Eric Prindle, Thiago Santos, Mark Holata and Richard Hale. None of the four who have been through the Bellator tournament gauntlet previously demonstrated a skill set to suggest that they’re the next big thing and the UFC veterans are no longer in the top promotion for a reason. Volkov, and possibly Queiroz, provide the most intriguing names within the field of eight, but they can hardly be considered world-beaters.

At this point, it doesn’t seem like a good idea to push forward.

Even if the promotion did continue with the division, it is too shallow to keep the momentum going forward and keep the division afloat. The fans won’t be interested in seeing two mediocre guys dueling in what should be MMA’s second-most premier promotion. Where is the credibility in that?

This tournament just seems to lack so many parts that the whole just doesn’t add up to an attention-grabber. Maybe if there were a few fighters who are actually proven, the division would be able to bring me on board. Looking at it right now though, the star power isn’t there, the talent doesn’t really seem to be there and overall, looking towards the future, it doesn’t make me think “I have to watch this! It will be exciting!”

Instead I’m here, writing an article grumbling about the talent and shallowness of the division. There was a reason why Zuffa dismantled the heavyweight division of Strikeforce. There just isn’t enough talent outside of the UFC to pique people’s interest.

Photo: Cole Konrad (Sherdog)

About The Author

Sal DeRose
Staff Writer

Sal hails from New Jersey and is currently training for his first MMA fight. He hopes to use his knowledge and insight to generate articles that interest and entertain you. Outside of MMA, Sal is a big fan of every other sport. He's a diehard New York sports fan, with the exception of cheering for the Packers.