Leialoha wasn’t exactly the big name that Stots was hoping to fight in his Bellator debut, as the fighter claims several big name fighters turned down on opportunity to battle the Bellator debutant.
“Not to stir up trouble, but there was a guy by the name of Patchy Mix who needed an opponent short notice, and I offered to step in. That didn’t come to fruition. I know James Gallagher needed an opponent late notice, (and) I got a message back that they’re not interested. I had a fight for Japan … and I don’t know what happened with that. But I was way happier to fight here. I’m just happy to know where I’m at, and if we meet each other in the future I’m always more than willing to make those fights. I was told that they didn’t want it … because it was short notice for them. But I’m the one stepping in for the fight that they have, so it is what it is. So when I see that, I’m like: ‘OK, you recognize. You know that I’m a legitimate threat to your career path or whatever you’ve got going on, so you don’t want a part of that right now.’ So that’s how I look at it. Who knows if that’s the case or whatever, but they’re more than welcome to prove me wrong. Step in the cage with me,” Stots said to MMA Junkie.
Stots was making his Bellator debut with a lot of hype behind him, as the fighter is a former Victory Fighting Championships Bantamweight Champion and had defeated two UFC veterans before signing with Bellator.
The fighter, who left Bellator 236 unscathed, says he is ready to fight again as soon as next week if necessary.
“I could fight next week, if I can,” he said. “I’m just ready to fight. I like to fight. This is fun to me. So if I don’t get harmed, why not do it again?”
There is only one more Bellator MMA event left this year, so Stots likely return to action would be happening in 2020.