Former two-division Bellator champion Patricio "Pitbull" Freire is becoming more and more doubtful he will get his rematch with current Bellator featherweight champion A.J. McKee.
Freire spoke with MMA Fighting's Guilherme Cruz on his podcast Trocacao Franca and revealed he offered to fight McKee in a catchweight bout for both the Bellator lightweight and featherweight titles. However, he went on to say that McKee completely ignored the offer and that the promotion also was not willing to make that matchup under those conditions either. All of this obviously led to Pitbull eventually vacating the Bellator lightweight title, clearing the way for his brother, Patricky Freire, to now have a chance to claim it when he takes on Peter Queally in a rematch for the vacant belt at Bellator 270 on Friday in Dublin, Ireland.
“[Bellator] sent an internal message turning it down,” Pitbull said. “A.J. McKee was pissed because I gave up the 155-pound title, but he didn’t respond when I called him for the all-or-nothing. He should be pissed at himself because if he had responded to that when I called him, it would create some buzz in the media, fans would talk more, and Bellator would be under some kind of pressure [to do it]. Maybe they would concede, maybe not, but [McKee] would have the chance to fight for the belt and become champ-champ, which is what he wanted. But he didn’t even answer me, he ignored me, so f*ck you, man. You can’t complain.”
He continued on to say the following about being unsure now if the rematch with McKee will even happen, and that he plans to stay active regardless of if a second fight between the two materializes next.
“Honestly, I was never hopeful that this rematch would happen,” Pitbull said. “I don’t know what was going through my mind [when I thought that]. I know I have history there [in Bellator], but right now it feels they have the right fighter. It’s a kid grown in Bellator, an American, 18-0, and [Bellator] won’t put Patricio Pitbull to end the reign of an American inside an American organization. I hope I have a chance, and I think everybody knows I deserve this title fight. It would be very naive if I didn’t accept a different fight. If A.J. is going to fight, he’ll be in rhythm, and I would be hurting myself if I didn’t accept [a fight]. A fighter gets rhythm every time he competes and the longer he stays inside the ring, and, to me, a champion is made of that. If A.J. McKee is fighting, I wanna fight right next to him, if possible on the same card.”