Welterweight contenders Neiman Gracie and Jason Jackson have their first fight of 2021 booked.
Bellator officials announced Friday that Gracie (10-1) and Jackson (13-4) will face off at Bellator 255 on April 2 at Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Conn. The matchup was first reported by MMA Junkie.
This bout will be part of Bellator’s first event on the Showtime television network.
Coming off of his first pro MMA loss, Gracie bounced back in impressive fashion with a second-round heel hook submission of veteran Jon Fitch at Bellator 246 in December. He also handed Ed Ruth his first loss, defeating Ruth by submission at Bellator 213, and unsuccessfully challenged Rory MacDonald for the welterweight championship in the semi-finals of the Bellator Welterweight World Grand Prix.
Jackson has won three straight with unanimous decision victories over former UFC lightweight champion Ben Henderson, Jordan Mein, and Kiichi Kunimoto. “The Ass-Kicking Machine” has won six of his last seven fights to place himself squarely in the welterweight title picture.
Bellator 255 is expected to be headlined by a featherweight title fight between champion Patricio Pitbull and challenger Emmanuel Sanchez. The bout also serves as the semifinals of the Bellator Featherweight World Grand Prix.