Bellator MMA is building on to its upcoming card in Oklahoma on February.
According to a promotional official on Friday, five new bouts have been added to Bellator 239 on Feb. 21 at the Winstar World Casino in Thackerville, Oklahoma. On the main card, Javy Ayala (11-7) will return from a lengthy layoff against Valentin Moldavsky (8-1) at heavyweight.
Ayala was been linked to a pair of matchups against Vitaly Minakov in 2019, but both fell through for various reasons. Before meeting at Bellator 225 in August, Ayala was removed by the commission for undisclosed reasons. Two months later, Minakov was forced to withdraw from their contest due to visa issues. Ayala last competed in December 2018, where he forced Frank Mir to tap to strikes at Bellator 212. The heavyweight finisher sports a stoppage rate of 91 percent, and also holds notable wins over Sergei Kharitonov and Eric Prindle.
Moldavsky will be returning to the promotion after a 10-month layoff, and competed exactly once in each of 2017, 2018 and 2019. In three bouts inside the Bellator cage, Moldavsky has yet to lose, last taking a decision over Linton Vassell at Bellator 218 in March 2019. The Rizin Fighting Federation veteran and training partner of Fedor Emelianenko sports a sole loss in his career, dropping a split verdict to eventual Rizin Openweight Grand Prix finalist Amir Aliakbari.
On the preliminary portion of the card, Lucas Brennan (2-0) meets Jamese Taylor (0-1) at featherweight. The relative neophyte Brennan is the son of longtime vet and former Ultimate Fighting Championship competitor Chris Brennan, and holds both of his career wins by first-round rear-naked choke. Additionally, Adil Benjilany (5-2) tries to bounce back from his first career stoppage defeat when he takes on "The Hard-Hitting Hillbilly" Kevin Croom (20-12) at the 145-pound division.
At lightweight, Team Alpha Male prospect Christopher Gonzalez (3-0) faces pure finisher Aaron McKenzie (7-1-1). Finally, highly touted Oklahoma native Christian Edwards (2-0) locks horns with Legacy Fighting Alliance veteran DiMarcco Hutchison (3-2) at light heavyweight.
Bellator 239 will be headlined by a welterweight encounter between Ed Ruth and the undefeated Yaroslav Amosov. At lightweight, Myles Jury takes on Brandon Girtz, while Tyrell Fortune looks to remain unbeaten against Timothy Johnson at heavyweight.