There's just one problem. Bellator is not ready to let him go. While it's true his contract was up, it is also the case that Bellator contractually had the right to match any other offer made to Alvarez by a rival promotion.
Currently, the UFC has made Alvarez an offer and Bellator came back and "matched" the offer. However, Alvarez and his lawyers feel it's not a legitimate match and the two parties are headed to court.
At 28-years-old and ranked among the top 10 lightweight MMA fighters in the world, Alvarez is in his prime and needs to be fighting. How long the case could drag out in litigation is anyone's guess.
Alvarez voiced his frustration at the situation while speaking to Ariel Helwani on The MMA Hour on Monday:
“We don’t believe it was matched at all. I want to be able to give the details to you guys, but I’m not allowed because we’re in the middle of a pending lawsuit. What I can say is what I said on Twitter the other day. If I wanted to go to dinner with one guy who asked me to dinner, and another guy asks me to do dinner, and the intentions of guy number one is to take me into a fine dining restaurant and to eat lobster, and the intention of the second guy is to maybe take me to McDonald’s, guy number two just believes that dinner is dinner. Dinner isn’t dinner, there’s a huge difference when you’re talking McDonald’s or some fine dining, the two we don’t believe are comparable.”