Fight Facts: Bellator 224

By Jay Pettry Jul 15, 2019

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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 second home -- the Winstar World Casino in Thackerville, Oklahoma -- with a featherweight title fight and a slew of intriguing matchups. Bellator 224 featured the fastest stoppage in Bellator women’s divisional history, the first disqualification in over six years and a couple of unbeaten fighters keeping it rolling.

SEEING STARS AT THE WINSTAR: Bellator 224 marked the 20th occasion the promotion has held an event in the Winstar World Casino. The only venue to host as many Bellator shows is the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut, where Bellator has also traveled 20 times.

LET ME SHOW YOU HOW IT’S DONE: Julia Budd’s stoppage of Olga Rubin at 2:14 of Round 1 marked the fastest stoppage in a women’s title fight by far, with none previous bouts ending before 1:50 of the third round.

BUDD TO THE BODY: By finishing Rubin with a kick to the body and follow-up punches and knees, Budd scored the fastest body kick stoppage in organizational history.

FROM BUDD TO FULL BLOOM: Budd tied Ilima-Lei Macfarlane for the most victories in championship bouts with four, as well as the most title defenses (three).

I’VE BEEN DOING THIS SINCE BEFORE YOU WERE BORN: A winner in each of her last 11 bouts, “The Jewel” has not tasted defeat since November 2011. Twenty-seven of the 31 other competitors on the Bellator 224 card had not yet made their pro debuts the last time Budd lost a fight.

ROUGH FOR RAFAEL: Prior to his bout with Chidi Njokuani, Rafael Carvalho had never left it in the hands of the judges in back-to-back fights. All three of his prior decisions were immediately followed by either kick or knee knockouts.

THERE’S YOUR NEXT CONTENDER: Juliana Velasquez has still not suffered defeat as a professional, as she became the first fighter to finish Kristina Williams with strikes and elevated her record to 9-0.

ED RUTHLESS: In finishing Kiichi Kunimoto with a knee and follow-up punches, Ed Ruth scored his sixth knockout under the Bellator banner. Only five fighters -- Douglas Lima, Patricky Freire, Andrey Koreshkov, Hector Lombard and Patricio Freire -- have knocked out more fighters in the Bellator cage.

TOTALLY UNNECESSARY: Kiefer Crosbie spoiled his undefeated record and picked up his first loss when he was disqualified for an illegal knee against Mike Jackson. It was the fourth Bellator fight to end in a disqualification and the first since Thiago Santos axe kicked Eric Prindle in the groin at Bellator 75 in 2012.

MADE HER PEACE WITH THE JUDGES: In taking a win by contentious majority decision, Leslie Smith picked up the second such verdict in Bellator women’s divisional history. Budd’s majority decision win over Arlene Blencowe at Bellator 162 in 2016 was the first.

SUCCESS HAS MADE A FAILURE OF OUR HOME: By losing to Smith, Sinead Kavanagh picked up her fourth loss under the Bellator lights, tying Emily Ducote for the most losses by any female fighter in company history.

TIME TO PUT HIM ON THE MAIN CARD: Jordan Young remained unbeaten at 11-0 when he tapped Joel Bauman with a triangle choke in the first round. Nine of his 11 wins have come by submission, including eight in the opening stanza.

TEN OUT OF TEN: Young is one submission win away from tying six fighters for the most submission victories in promotional history with six. He became the 10th Bellator fighter to ever submit at least five opponents.

JORDAN GRACIE: By submitting each of his last five opponents, Young became only the second Bellator fighter to accomplish the feat. Neiman Gracie was the first.

RANG HER BELL: Needing only 22 seconds to put away Amanda Bell, Blencowe picked up the quickest stoppage of any female fighter in Bellator history.

NEVER SAY NEVER AGAIN: Coming into Bellator 224, Rubin had never been defeated (six fights), Njokuani (25 fights) and Antonio Jones (nine fights) had never lost on the scorecards and Justin Vargas had never been finished (four fights).

Sherdog 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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