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By The Numbers: Bellator 1


More than 13 years and nearly 300 events into its existence, Bellator MMA continues to provide mixed martial arts fans across the globe with a viable second option to the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

Bellator launched under founder Bjorn Rebney with Bellator 1 on April 3, 2009 at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Hollywood, Florida, doing so with a tournament format that put a premium on grand prix-style competition in various weight classes. The company has undergone multiple facelifts in the ensuing years. Now under the command of former Strikeforce frontman Scott Coker, Bellator appears poised for success well into this decade in beyond, having hitched its wagon to mixed martial artists like Patricio Freire, A.J. McKee, Yaroslav Amosov, Cristiane “Cyborg” Justino and Ilima-Lei Macfarlane, among others.

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As Bellator moves forward in its current iteration, a by-the-numbers look at the show where it all began:

1,756: Fans on hand to witness Bellator 1. It remained the promotion’s highest-reported attendance figure for more than a year.

7: Countries represented at the event. The flags of the United States, Ireland, Mexico, Peru, Brazil, Canada and Italy were all flown.

4: Fights each refereed by Jason Herzog and Frank Gentile, the two busiest officials at the show. Troy Waugh oversaw the other three bouts.

11: Bellator 1 alums who never saw action again inside the promotion. Nick Agallar, Greg Loughran, Ben Greer, Stephen Ledbetter, Jonathan Brookins, Daniel Morales, Kevin Abrante, James Brasco, Chris Decaro, Gary Padilla and Daniel Sarafian have yet to return to Bellator since they made their organizational debuts.

41: Years of age for Abrante at the time. Born on Jan. 18, 1968 in Brooklyn, New York, he was the oldest fighter on the card. Abrante submitted to an armbar from Brasco a little more than two minutes into their middleweight pairing.

79: Seconds needed for American Top Team’s Jorge Masvidal to cut down Agallar with punches in the lightweight headliner. It was the fastest finish on the card and still ranks as the third-fastest stoppage on Masvidal’s resume behind his 56 second technical knockout of Brant Rose under the Crazy Horse Fights banner on Dec. 11, 2007 and his five-second knockout of Ben Askren at UFC 239 in July 6, 2019.

10: Finishes at the event, seven of which resulted in submissions—four via rear-naked choke, one by armbar, one via triangle choke and one by guillotine choke. Estevan Payan was the outlier, as he eked out a split decision over Luis Palomino in the only fight to go the distance.

22: Years of age for Joe Soto at the time. Born in Porterville, California, on March 22, 1987, he was the youngest fighter on the Bellator 1 roster. Soto put away Greer with punches 3:40 into the first round of their featherweight clash.

2: Future Bellator champions competed on the card. Soto held the featherweight crown from June 5, 2009 to Sept. 2, 2010, while Eddie Alvarez twice held the lightweight title, from June 19, 2009 to Nov. 19, 2011 and again from Nov. 2, 2013 to Aug. 19, 2014.

.645: Cumulative winning percentage between the 22 men who competed at the event, as they carry a combined record of 375-204-2. Alonzo Martinez owns the most wins (46) and has been saddled with the most losses (23) of any of the participating fighters.
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