Former Strikeforce Light Heavyweight Champion and UFC veteran Rafael Cavalcante hasn’t been seen much since getting cut by the UFC in 2016.
Despite only competing once since getting ousted by the UFC, a hopeful Cavalcante predicts he’ll sign with Bellator MMA in the near future.
“My goal is to go to Bellator,” Cavalcante told MMA Fighting. “I believe it will happen. I think it’s a 95 percent chance, but I have this fight in Spain first. I’m just waiting for an opponent, but it will probably be in November. (Coker) is a great man. I’ve known him for years and he has always treated me very well, inside and outside of competition. He’s really cool.”
Bellator MMA President Scott Coker and Cavalcante have a past relationship, as Coker was the head of Strikeforce, while Cavalcante was their aforementioned light heavyweight champion at one point.
Cavalcante won just one of five during his time in the UFC, but he admits that tough run lead to changes in the fighting style.
“It took a while because I couldn’t see it,” Cavalcante said. “I should have changed before and I blame myself as well for not doing it. When you get to a certain stage, you get too comfortable. Not that you stop training, but sometimes you train hard but don’t evolve. Things evolve too quickly in our sport. A technique that worked a year ago doesn’t work anymore. We’re in there and we have to know how to deal with this situation, to have people judging you,” he continued. “I’m not complaining because that’s how things are, but I had to go back to my origins. Nobody knows what we go through to get in there, but it was good for me to reinvent myself and rise again to be able to do what I know.”
If Cavalcante does get signed to the promotion, it would make him part of a division currently ruled by fellow UFC veteran Ryan Bader.