Bautista was in negotiations with Strikeforce in 2010.
Bautista Making MMA Debut in October for Classic Entertainment & Sports
Former WWE wrestler David Bautista has made it known that he wanted to try his hand at mixed martial arts, and he has now been provided the platform to make that happen. Jimmy Burchfield’s Classic Entertainment & Sports (CES) officially announced the signing of the six-foot-six Bautista, who will make his professional MMA debut on October 6th at the Dunkin Donuts Center in Providence, Rhode Island.
“Fighting MMA is a dream come true,” Bautista commented. “I’m very excited to make my debut in Providence with Jimmy Burchfield, who has so much experience putting on fights. CES treats me like family, and I can’t wait to make my debut with them. MMA has been my lifelong dream, and I’m glad to be able to do it with them on the East Coast.”
Bautista had garnered quite a following among professional wrestling fans over a 10-year career, winning the WWE Championship six times over that period. The 43-year-old DC native was in negotiations with Strikeforce in 2010 to initially embark upon an MMA career, but talks fell through when the organization was bought out by UFC owners Zuffa, LLC. He has continued to pursue that goal since then and will now finally make his first appearance in the sport when he faces heavyweight Rashid Evans (1-2) in October.
“This is going to be huge, literally and figuratively,” CES owner Jimmy Burchfield said of the signing. “Of all the promoters in the world, Dave Bautista chose CES because we take care of our fighters, and we deliver results. No one has sold out The Dunkin’ Donuts Center since Vinny Paz fought Joe Frazier, Jr., in 1986. We had people waiting outside trying desperately to get into the building that night, and we’re expecting the same atmosphere on October 6 with Dave Bautista.
“There is no one who puts on a show like Dave, and there’s no promoter other than Classic Entertainment & Sports capable of turning his dream into a reality. Since Day one, we promised our fans we’d get bigger and better with each show. Who bigger than Dave Bautista, all six-feet, six inches and 290 pounds of him, to deliver on that promise? It’s an honor to work with both Dave and June Entertainment. We’re going to turn October 6 into a night to remember.
“You’d be crazy to miss this epic event. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” Burchfield concluded.
Tickets for October 6th on are sale now through Ticketmaster, ranging from $20-$250. The show will also air live as part of a Direct TV PPV.