6 Confirmed for Bellator Season 5 Bantamweight Tourney

By Chris Nelson May 8, 2011
Chase Beebe made the most of his Bellator Fighting Championships debut Saturday, securing future employment with the Chicago-based organization after a quick submission win at Bellator 43.

With his four-minute guillotine-choking of Missourian Jose Vega at the First Council Casino in Newkirk, Okla., Beebe (Pictured; file photo) became the latest fighter named to Bellator’s upcoming fifth-season bantamweight tournament.

Following Saturday’s event, Bellator officials confirmed to Sherdog.com the six participants now set for the eight-man field: Beebe, a former WEC bantamweight champion; Eduardo “Dudu” Dantas, current Shooto South America 132-pound titleholder; Marcos Galvao, current Ring of Combat featherweight champ; Shooto Brazil standout Luis “Betao” Nogueira; reigning Bellator featherweight ace Joe Warren; and third-season bantamweight finalist Ed West.

In addition, a qualifying bout between former tournament entrant Bryan Goldsby and WEC veteran Anthony “Cheesesteak” Morrison will take place at Bellator 44, which goes down May 14 at Caesars Atlantic City Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City, N.J.

Any number of interesting rematches could take place during the course of the tournament, including one between Galvao and Warren, who fought to a controversial decision on April 16 from which Warren emerged victorious. Nogueira, meanwhile, will look to wipe the sole loss from his record, a November 2008 armbarring at the hands of Dantas.

Beebe, 26, also has a score to settle within the tournament bracket: In March 2009, the Chicago native was eliminated from Japanese promotion Dream’s 139-pound grand prix by a debuting wrestler named Joe Warren. However, at Saturday’s post-fight press conference, Beebe was not focused on revenge, but rather how to demonstrate to MMA fans the excitement his weight class can hold.

“I’m just looking forward to showing them what bantamweight’s all about. Just putting on that fast pace, you know, nonstop and relentless,” said Beebe. “I really plan on really establishing our weight class and showing everybody we’re some of the funnest guys to watch.”

Bellator’s MTV2-broadcast fifth season is expected to begin in September, though no date has been set for the launch of what will be the company’s second 135-pound tourney. As with all of Bellator’s tournaments, the winner will receive $100,000 in total prize money and a shot at the division’s current champion, Zach Makovsky.

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