Heavyweight Roy Nelson has with Bellator MMA, leaving the UFC after an eight year tenure inside the Octagon

The American fighter, 40 years of age, has opted to sign with the fledgling rather than re-sign with the UFC, following in the recent footsteps of Phil Davis, Ryan Bader, Benson Henderson, Matt Mitrione and Rory MacDonald

The thirteen year veteran went 8-10 in the UFC, gaining notable wins over the likes of Mirko Cro Cop, Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, Antonio Silva and Stefan Struve, in addition to winning season 10 of The Ultimate Fighter back in 2009

In his most recent outing, Nelson dropped a unanimous decision loss to Russian Alexander Volkov at April’s UFC On Fox 24 event, which was the veteran final fight on his UFC contract

Nelson joins a growing Bellator heavyweight division, along with Matt Mitrione and Fedor Emelianenko, who are set to face off at the promotion’s June 24th pay-per-view event, in addition to Bobby Lashley who is currently riding an eight fight winning streak and Cheick Kongo who likewise is on an undefeated streak downing his last five opponents

By Matthew Singh-Dosanjh