Fight Facts: Bellator 219

By Jay Pettry Apr 2, 2019

Fight Facts is a breakdown of all of the interesting information and cage curiosities on every card, with some puns, references and portmanteaus to keep things fun. These deep stat dives delve into the numbers, providing historical context and telling the stories behind those numbers.

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Bellator MMA on Friday went back to its home state of California with a card containing plenty of action. Bellator 219 featured the triumphant return of a fighter who was told he might never walk again, the most active fighter in Bellator history and the unusual distinction of multiple injury stoppages at one event.

BUT WHY?: In an unusual bout order, Bellator scheduled seven postliminary matches to take place after the main event ended. The main event of Bellator 219 was only the sixth fight out of 13 total.

BAD LUCK: Bellator 219 became the first event in promotional history to ever have multiple bouts end by injury stoppage. A.J. Matthews retired from his contest due to an eye injury, and Cody Vidal suffered a knee injury.

FALL DOWN EIGHT TIMES, STAND UP NINE: In losing a decision to Brandon Girtz, Saad Awad suffered his eighth loss inside the Bellator cage, more than any other fighter in company history.

CAVEMAN SMASH: David Rickels took sole possession of third place for the most wins in Bellator history with 15. He trails Michael Chandler and Patricio Freire.

TAKE WHAT YOU CAN GET: Although the finish came by injury stoppage, Rickels recorded his ninth finish inside the Bellator cage. This tied him with five other fighters for the third-most stoppage victories in Bellator behind only Freire (10) and Chandler (11).

AS WE DESCEND …: After earning a technical knockout stoppage win by finishing Matthews, Rickels now holds eight decision victories, seven knockout wins and six submission victories. On the other side, he has five losses total, with four by knockout. Throughout his Bellator career, he has competed in three tournaments and lost twice before the finals. Rickels has fought for the belt one time and was knocked out by Chandler at Bellator 97 in 2013.

NO RESPECT AT ALL: Rickels’ bout with Matthews was his 22nd under the Bellator banner, meaning he has now competed for the promotion more times than any other fighter. Nevertheless, he was placed in the middle of the postliminary card of this event.

SLOW YOUR ROLL: Despite only missing weight by 0.4 pounds for his lightweight bout, David Pacheco was pulled from the card by the California State Athletic Commission. The commission claimed the weight disparity between him and opponent Kelvin Gentapanan on fight day was too great. Pacheco was one of two fighters on this card whose weight was so egregious that they could not compete, as Weber Almeida also was pulled from the card for being too heavy.

NEVER SAY NEVER AGAIN: Coming into Bellator 219, Joe Schilling (eight fights) and Janay Harding (eight fights) had never won by decision, Marina Mokhnatkina had never competed outside of Russia (five fights) and Dominic Mazzotta had never lost on the scorecards (16 fights).

KING OF THE WALKOUT: Choosing to go a different direction than his standard caveman-related walkouts, Rickels sported a leather vest and a clean-shaven head while walking out to “Glass Shatters” by Disturbed -- a song made famous by former World Wrestling Entertainment superstar “Stone Cold” Steve Austin. Rickels won by technical knockout, and after his win, he hit his teammate with a “Stunner.”

I CAN GO FOR THAT: Matthews made the confident walk to the cage accompanied by “I Can’t Go for That” by Hall & Oates and suffered an injury TKO loss to Rickels. Over in the UFC, no recorded fighter has ever walked out to any Hall & Oates song.

LUCKY LOGGINS: In a postliminary match, Ricky Furar emerged with “Danger Zone” by Kenny Loggins playing, and he won by technical knockout. This follows the trend in the UFC, where fighters are undefeated while using any Loggins song.

Contributing editor Jay Pettry is an attorney and a statistician. Writing about MMA since he started studying the “Eminem Curse” in 2012 and working for Vice Sports and Combat Docket along the way, he put together many fight result and entrance music databases to better study the sport. You can find him on twitter at @jaypettry.
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