ESPN’s OTL feature garners Martinez Bellator contract
July 7, 2011
Josh Gross first tweeted the news that Rad Martinez was offered a chance to fight for Bellator. Martinez, an aspiring MMA fighter, was featured on ESPN’s Outside the Line series which chronicled his commitment to caring for his brain-damaged father.
Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney said the organization had been in talks with Levi Martinez, Rad’s brother and manager, during the last year. After learning of Martinez’s story via the OTL piece on Sunday, Rebney instructed his matchmaker, Sam Caplan, to sign the 9-2 fighter, whose last bout ended in a submission loss to Brian Cobb in May.
Martinez was an All American wrestler at Clarion University where he was a teammate of Frankie Edgar.
The OTL feature is a must watch segment and shows the power of media. Its good to see that an obscure MMA fighter received mainstream exposure for this piece. From a public relations viewpoint, its a great human interest story that Bellator can utilize. For Martinez, it gives him a shot at his MMA dream and the financial ability to seek assistance to help with his father. One of the ESPN sportcasters noted after the OTL segment that Martinez’s father is physically healthy and can live for many years to come. The news comes with mixed emotions considering this meant that Martinez would be sacrificing most of his life to care for his father. This was a definite heartwrenching story. The good news is that through this story, Bellator took notice and Martinez has the opportunity to get some assistance in caring for his father.