Just In Ex-champ Eduardo Dantas to meet Juan Archuleta at Bellator 222 in New York MMA Life

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When former bantamweight champion Eduardo Dantas returns to the Bellator cage, it won’t be in the division he once ruled.

Dantas will compete at featherweight when he meets Juan Archuleta on June 14 on the main card of Bellator 222, promotion officials confirmed to MMA Fighting.

Dantas (21-6 MMA, 11-4 BMMA) most recently has beaten Toby Misech at Bellator 215 to rebound from two unfortunate career firsts: a losing skid and surgery. Dantas ruled the 135-pound division in two separate occasions and was most recently dethroned in Oct. 2017, by Darrion Caldwell. Dantas returned against Michael MacDonald at Bellator 202, losing a first-round knockout and suffering a leg injury in the process.

Throughout, Dantas made it clear that he still had his sights set on reclaiming his title. What the featherweight detour means for those plans, though, remains to be seen.

Archuleta (22-1 MMA, 4-0 BMMA) is also coming up from a bantamweight clash, but he’s no stranger to moving around weight classes. The three Bellator bouts he’d had before his Bellator 214 win over Ricky Bandejas were at featherweight, and the “Spaniard” had earned titles in multiple King of the Cage divisions prior to that.

Unlike Dantas, Archuleta has never held a Bellator title, but a 17-fight winning streak isn’t too bad of a stat to bring into the cage.

Bellator 222 streams live on DAZN from Madison Square Garden. Champ Rory MacDonald and Neiman Gracie will square off in the welterweight grand prix semifinals as the headliner.

A light heavyweight meeting between Lyoto Machida and Chael Sonnen is set to co-headline the event, which will also feature a rematch between champ Caldwell and Rizin FF champion Kyoji Horiguchi, this time with Bellator’s bantamweight title on the line.

For more on Bellator 222, go to the Rumors section of the site.

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