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04th Dec 2018

Ex-WWE superstar Jack Swagger will make MMA debut on one of the biggest cards of 2019

Let's hope it goes better than CM Punk's

Darragh Murphy

jack swagger

WWE fans will spot a recognisable face on one of the biggest MMA cards of 2019

Former WWE superstar Jack Swagger, real name Jake Hager, will make his mixed martial arts debut on the undercard of Bellator’s heavyweight grand prix finale on January 26.

Prior to the deciding fight between former UFC light heavyweight Ryan Bader and pound-for-pound legend Fedor Emelianenko, Hager is set to don MMA gloves for a debut against JW Kiser.

Hager, a former NCAA wrestling All-American, signed with Bellator last year and has been training for his debut ever since.

The 36-year-old was released from his WWE contract last year following a successful stint with the professional wrestling promotion and has since featured on a couple of occasions for independent organisations but with an eye to eventually try his hand at MMA.

He will get the opportunity to showcase what he’s learned when he shares the cage with Kiser, a 41-year-old with a professional record of 0-1, and will compete in Bellator’s heavyweight division.

In college, Hager was named an All-American after setting the Oklahoma record for most pins in a single wrestling season with 30, meaning he is likely better-equipped for a mixed martial arts debut than CM Punk, whose unsuccessful ventures in the UFC have been well-documented. 

Former WWE superstars haven’t all fared as poorly in professional MMA as Punk, real name Phil Brooks, as you will remember that Brock Lesnar claimed the UFC heavyweight title in just his fourth fight.

Will Jack Swagger be more of a CM Punk or a Brock Lesnar? Tune in on January 26 to find out.