Jack Swagger Signs With Bellator MMA, Announces He'll Fight Heavyweight in 2018

Jake Hager

Jake Hager, better known by his WWE ring name Jack Swagger, announced Monday on "The MMA Hour" with Ariel Helwani that he had signed a multi-fight deal with Bellator MMA and would make his professional debut in 2018.

"There are just certain types of guys that just need to be punched in the face, want to taste blood", Hager said.

The wrestler says he's been MMA/boxing training for eight months and is under contract for six fights.

Hager was a college wrestling superstar at the University of Oklahoma.

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He made his WWE developmental debut right out of college for Deep South Wrestling, but once on the main roster in 2008, he excelled and captured numerous company's titles, including the WWE championship, United States Championship and ECW Championship.

In 2008 he won the ECW Championship, while he became World Heavyweight Champion a year later. Swagger has been working on the independent scene since departing WWE earlier this year. Hager is 35 years old, and as he said, he's a long way removed from his time competing in amateur wrestling.

Of course, Hager isn't the first professional wrestler to crossover into MMA but unlike some of his fellow superstars such as CM Punk, he has legitimate credentials on his resume that will help with the transition. I like what Bellator are doing right now and the roster is filling up and its not just top heavy, the guys in the middle of the rankings are very competitive and risky.

'I'm not a freak show coming in to take some money, I'm here to compete and be a champion'.