Former WWE wrestler, Dave Bautista (also known as “The Animal ‘Batista’”) will make his highly anticipated MMA debut this Saturday with CES MMA. His opponent will now be Vince Lucero who took the fight on just five days notice after Bautista’s original opponent, Rashid Evans, was sent back to jail on a parole violation. Promotion officials announced the bout Monday night.
Vince “Real Pain” Lucero (22-22-1 draw, MMA) stepped up to take on the 43-year-old Bautista at the Dunkin Donuts Center in Providence, R.I. on October 6th. Who would face Bautista has been up in the air since Evans returned to lockup. Bruno McKee who had three amateur MMA bouts under his belt was briefly linked to fight Bautista until he pulled out last week stating he didn’t have enough time to prepare.
Bautista left pro wrestling in 2010 to follow his passion for MMA. He’s trained MMA with Cesar Gracie and also Stephan Bonnar. Prior to Zuffa purchasing Strikeforce, Bautista was in the midst of beginning his MMA career with the promotion. Things fell through with Strikeforce and 2 years later, Bautista has resurfaced on the map.
Lucero has fought with Rage In The Cage and the IFL. The 40-year-old MMA fighter has also faced current and former UFC heavyweights, Tim Sylvia, Roy Nelson and Lavar Johnson, to name a few.
The show will air nationally in the U.S. on DirecTV pay-per-view, and stream for $29.95 worldwide at www.bautistamma.com.