Muhammed Lawal is moving down not just one but two weight classes.
After losing to Ryan Bader by 15-second knockout in the Bellator 199 main event and the heavyweight Grand Prix quarterfinals, “King Mo” announced plans to drop to the middleweight division.
“This is MMA. Things don’t always go the way you expected. Congratulations to @ryanbader for his big win tonight. He deserves it,” Lawal wrote in an Instagram post early Sunday morning, just hours after the bout.
“Now, this being said, It’s time for me to move to the Middleweight division. Yeah you read it right. 185ibs. #KingMoneyweight.”
Lawal (21-7, 1 NC) competed in the heavyweight division in his last four fights, including Saturday’s loss to Bader. Most of his bouts, dating back to Strikeforce, have taken place at 205 pounds. He has never competed at middleweight before.
Since winning the Rizin FF heavyweight Grand Prix tournament in 2015, Lawal has alternated wins and losses. In 2016, he lost to Phil Davis and beat Satoshi Ishii at Bellator events and was knocked out by Mirko Cro Cop in the Rizin FF openweight Grand Prix. In 2017, he beat Quinton Jackson in a rematch.