Ryan Bader issues first statement after quick Bellator 268 loss: ‘The game we play’

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Ryan Bader has broken his silence.

On Monday, Bader (28-7 MMA, 6-2 BMMA) released a brief statement on his Instagram page, the first since his 51-second TKO loss to Corey Anderson at Bellator 268 on Saturday. The event took place at Footprint Center in Phoenix in Bader’s home state of Arizona.

“The game we play,” Bader wrote. “Not the result we wanted but felt the love in AZ! Thank you guys for always having my back”

As an Arizonian competing in his home state for the first time under a major promotional banner, Bader stepped into the Bellator cage to a thunderous ovation. However, Anderson quickly turned the cheers into boos when he swarmed Bader with a flurry of punches and ground-and-pound shots until referee Jason Herzog dove in and stopped the fight.

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Bader, 38, is now 1-2 in his most recent three outings. Prior to his Bellator 256 win against Lyoto Machida in April, Bader lost his light heavyweight title by TKO to Vadim Nemkov at Bellator 244 in August. Although he’s only lost twice since late 2013, Bader’s professional defeats have all come inside the distance, including five TKO stoppages.

While his next fight is not yet on the books, it’s presumed Bader will move back to heavyweight, where he still is the promotion’s champion, to unify the division’s titles against interim champ Valentin Moldavsky.

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