– Official Announcement On Jack Swagger Signing With Bellator MMA, Swagger Comments
As we noted before, former World Heavyweight Champion Jack Swagger signed with Bellator MMA and he will be making his debut in the Heavyweight Division next year. Below is the official announcement and Swagger’s comments on the signing:
JAKE HAGER, FORMERLY KNOWN AS WWE’S JACK SWAGGER, SIGNS EXCLUSIVE MULTI-YEAR DEAL WITH BELLATOR MMA
“LOS ANGELES – Bellator is pleased to announce that it has reached a multi-fight, multi-year deal with Jake Hager, who was formerly known as “Jack Swagger” during his nearly nine-year run with WWE. The deal will see Hager make his MMA debut inside a Bellator cage.
Hager will compete at heavyweight and is expected to debut in 2018.
A native of Perry, Okla., Hager would go on to be a collegiate wrestler at the University of Oklahoma, where he was an All-American and set the school record for most pins at the 285-pound weight class in a single season with 30. Following graduation and a conversation with legendary pro wrestling announcer and fellow Oklahoma Sooner, Jim Ross, Hager made the transition to professional wrestling and signed with WWE.
While in WWE, Hager would go on to claim multiple coveted professional titles during his time with the organization, including the WWE World Heavyweight Championship, ECW Championship and WWE United States Championship,
After ending his run with the WWE earlier this year, Hager turned his sights toward another avenue, fully focusing on mixed martial arts skillset and testing himself against some of the best athletes in the world.
“This is something I’ve wanted to do for a long time. It’s something that’s a prat of me so it makes sense. I’m very happy with the deal. I’ve felt a lot of love from Bellator,” said Hager. “I think there are certain types of guys who need to be punched in the face and taste blood. I’ve always been a fan of MMA, I’ve been wrestling since I was five years old. It’s awesome to be with Bellator. They’re really going to put 100 percent towards it!”
“I’m excited to see Jake Hager debut for Bellator in 2018,” Bellator President Scott Coker said. “When I heard he was seriously interested in competing in MMA and when you look at what he did at the collegiate level, I was very interested in having him on our roster. I think Jake will expose new fans to Bellator from his previous run with WWE and he will be given every opportunity to prove that he’s the real deal inside the cage.”
Hager is the latest in a long line of high-profile signings Bellator has made recently and joins a heavyweight division that will crown a champion in 2018 through the recently announced eight-man Bellator Heavyweight Grand Prix.”
– WWE Star Confirms That He’s Going To Miss WrestleMania 34
During a recent appearance on Sam Roberts Wrestling Podcast, Raw Star Big Cass talked about getting injured while he was being pushed as a singles wrestler, when he’s expected to return & more. Below are the highlights:
On getting injured:
“I knew immediately when I hit the floor. I felt the pop and heard the pop, and when I got up I just couldn’t put weight on it, and i knew right away. I told the ref that I tore my ACL, but I think I could finish the match. However, that didn’t happen.
The second I collapsed he told me to get out of the ring and that is when reality set in. The second I rolled out, all I am thinking is 8-9 months I am out. I was on my way out. I just defeated Big Show at SummerSlam, I’m rocking & rolling, just finished my feud with Enzo, but all I was thinking was how huge of a set back that was.
I was really angry and emotional, which is how I normally am, angry and emotional, and just the thought – I always wanted to be here and do this finally on my own, but at that point all I think about is 8-9 moths on the shelf, I just got really emotional, it’s just how I am.”
On when he’s expected to return:
“I’m right on schedule from right when the surgeon said. So it should be shortly after WrestleMania.”