Diego Nunes figures to be one of the favorites in Bellator’s 145-pound tourney. | Keith Mills/Sherdog.com
Bellator’s Season 10 featherweight tournament will begin Feb. 28 at Bellator 110.
Promotion officials announced the news Friday, revealing that UFC veteran Diego Nunes and former M-1 Global lightweight champion Daniel Weichel will square off with Matt Bessette and Scott Cleve in the round of eight. The other side of the bracket will see Season 8 finalist Mike Richman will take on Desmond Green, while once-beaten prospect Goiti Yamauchi meets Will Martinez.
Bellator 110 takes place at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Conn., and is headlined by a light heavyweight tournament semifinal pitting ex-UFC champion Quinton Jackson against former Bellator titlist Christian M’Pumbu. The evening’s Spike TV-broadcast co-headliner will showcase onetime Strikeforce king Muhammed Lawal, as “King Mo” takes on Mikhail Zayats for a spot in the 205-pound final.
Nunes made his Bellator debut this past September, suffering a first-round knockout to Patricio Freire in the Season 9 quarterfinals. Bessette, meanwhile, rides a four-fight winning streak into his fourth Bellator appearance.
Weichel has won three straight fights heading into Bellator debut, most recently submitting Artiom Damkovsky this past February at M-1 Challenge 37. Cleve has not lost since May 2012 and makes his sophomore Bellator appearance on the heels of a successful October foray against ex-Tachi Palace Fights ruler Isaac DeJesus.
A two-time tournament veteran, Richman fought his way to the Season 8 finals last spring before coming up short against Magomedrasul Khasbulaev. “The Marine” rebounded with a victory, however, knocking out Akop Stepanyan at Bellator 106. Green also bounced back from a tournament defeat in his last outing, when he stopped Angelo Sanchez this past October at Bellator 105.
Just 21 years old, Yamauchi is already a veteran of 17 pro fights. While the Brazilian missed weight by more than six pounds in his last outing, he nevertheless walked away a winner, knocking out Saul Almeida at Bellator 109. Though Martinez began his career with an inauspicious record of 1-2-1, he has since won seven straight bouts and picked up four Bellator victories along the way.