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USA Today Sports Media Group
Matthew Wells and Nolan King

A.J. McKee targeted for return against Sidney Outlaw at Bellator 301

Former Bellator champion A.J. McKee is targeted to return to action in a key lightweight bout in November.

Bellator is in the process of finalizing a matchup between McKee (20-1 MMA, 20-1 BMMA) and Sidney Outlaw for its upcoming November event. Multiple sources with knowledge of the matchup confirmed the targeted booking with MMA Junkie following a first report from ESPN.

Bellator 301 takes place Nov. 17 at Wintrust Arena in Chicago, and features two title fights at the top of the card. In the main event, welterweight champion Yaroslav Amosov puts his title on the line against Jason Jackson. The bantamweight title will be unified in the co-feature, as champion Sergio Pettis faces interim champion Patchy Mix.

McKee, 28, will compete for the first time in 2023. The former featherweight champion was set to fight Patricky Freire at Bellator X Rizin 2 in July, but a staph infection forced him to withdraw from the bout. McKee last competed at Bellator X Rizin 1 on New Year’s Eve, where he defeated Roberto de Souza by unanimous decision.

Outlaw (17-5 MMA, 5-2 UFC) will look to keep the momentum going from a unanimous decision win over Islam Mamedov at Bellator 298 in August. The 31-year-old lightweight suffered a setback to Tofiq Musayev in the bout prior, which followed a pair of wins over Adam Piccolotti and Myles Jury.

With the addition, the current Bellator 301 lineup includes:

  • Yaroslav Amosov vs. Jason Jackson – for welterweight title
  • Sergio Pettis vs. Patchy Mix – to unify bantamweight title
  • Patricky Freire vs. Alexander Shabliy
  • Raufeon Stots vs. Danny Sabatello
  • A.J. McKee vs. Sidney Outlaw
  • Ali Isaev vs. Daniel James
  • Tyrell Fortune vs. Marcelo Golm
  • Justin Gonzales vs. Timur Khizriev
  • Mike Hamel vs. Tim Wilde
  • Sumiko Inaba vs. Denise Kielholtz
  • Islam Mamedov vs. Killys Mota

For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for Bellator 301.

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