for the people who didn't see it in the bellator threadThree months after the MMA world wondered if a fifth straight loss was going to lead to retirement for Josh Koscheck, it has its answer: Nope.
Instead, Koscheck (17-10 MMA, 0-0 BMMA) has left the UFC after 10 years and 25 fights with the promotion to sign with rival Bellator. Promotion officials announced the news during Friday’s Bellator 139.
Koscheck, a veteran of Season 1 of “The Ultimate Fighter” and a onetime UFC welterweight title challenger, went 15-10 in the UFC. But his five straight losses including four consecutive stoppage setbacks, including back-to-back submission losses to Jake Ellenberger and Erick Silva just three weeks apart.
The Silva loss was the last on Koscheck’s UFC contract, a source close to the fighter confirmed to MMAjunkie on Friday.
No first fight was announced for Koscheck with Bellator, but almost without question the promotion has its eye on a fight between him and Paul Daley. The two fought at UFC 113 in May 2010, and after a decision win for Koscheck, Daley sucker punched him after the bell. That led to Daley’s release from the UFC – a situation that caused UFC President Dana White to say he’d never be welcomed back.
After Koscheck’s loss to Silva in Brazil, White said he wasn’t going to push Koscheck toward retirement the way he had other fighters in the past, like Chuck Liddell and Matt Hughes.
“I do have a soft spot for the ‘TUF 1’ guys, and Josh and I will talk in a couple days, and we’ll go from there,” White said after UFC Fight Night 62, where Koscheck was submitted in the first round
For Koscheck’s part, the loss to Silva left him disappointed, but not thinking about hanging up his gloves.
“I’m not happy with where I’m at. I’m 37, and finishing the last fights on my contract haven’t been the greatest.”
Koscheck was one of only three “TUF 1″ cast members still on the UFC’s active roster, along with the season’s middleweight winner, Diego Sanchez, whom he outpointed at UFC 69, and Mike Swick.
For more on Bellator’s upcoming schedule, stay tuned to the MMA Rumors section of the site.