Bellator 262 coverage kicks off Friday at 6:30 p.m. ET.Sherdog's live
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Bellator Flyweight Title Fight:
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Charlie Campbell (155) vs. Nick Giulietti (156)
Round 1Kicking off the card, lightweight prospect Charlie Campbell (3-1), nicknamed "The Cannibal", is a healthy favorite against Nick Giulietti (2-1). Referee Kerry Hatley will look on. Giulietti tries to touch gloves to begin, but Campbell wants nothing of it. Giulietti starts out throwing side-kicks and front-kicks, but Campbell is out of range on all occasions. Capmbell goes for a jumping knee, but it's unsuccessful, and Giulietti takes an opportunity to clinch up. He cranks an underhook nicely and forces Campbell to the canvas. Giulietti is making his more hyped opponent pay for his disrespect! Giulietti is pressing from the top and briefly gets a scarfhold, a position where it's very possible to escape out of the side. However, Campbell is unable to take advantage and Giulietti soon goes back to side control. Campbell tries to turn, but gives up his back. Campbell is defending, but getting peppered with the occasional punch now. Giulietti is persistent though, and eventually gets one hook in and starts pounding away with right hands more regularly. Halfway through the round, and Giulietti is firmly in control, with Campbell doing little except covering up. Giulietti starts incorporating left-handed punches into his offense, too, and Campbell eventually turns back. He soon gives up his back again, and after Giulietti softens him up with more strikes, goes for a rear-naked choke. It's not under the chin, however. Giulietti isn't discouraged and goes back to his ground-and-pound. Eventually, Campbell manages to move away a little, and stands up. He finally turns around and gains separation. Suddenly, Giulietti is horribly tired and Campbell is just pelting him with kicks! What a turn-around! Giulietti desperately clinches to buy himself some time, but not for long. Campbell throws head kicks that Giulietti desperately covers up against, and scores with a hard right cross. The bell sounds to end a very action-packed round with wild swings. 10-9 Giulietti.
Round 2This time, the two men touch gloves to start the stanza. Giulietti still looks winded, although he is throwing kicks early, all easily evaded by Campbell. Giulietti shoots a double-leg from very far distance, and Campbell successfully sprawls. Campbell punishes him with a straight left on the feet and continues stalking his prey. He throws another head kick that is blocked. Giulietti shoots again but he is again stuffed. Campbell throws a few punches, and Giulietti shoots again. He is stuffed yet again and now Campbell has him against the fence, unloading with kicks and punches to the body, as Giulietti desperately covers up. He briefly crumples to his feet, then stands back, only to eat more kicks and punches, including a gorgeous left hook to the body. With Giulietti not intelligently defending himself, Kerry Hatley has no choice but to halt the contest. A nice comeback by Campbell, as he then uses his postfight celebration to call out Jake Paul, of all people.
The Official ResultCharlie Campbell def. Nick Giulietti via TKO (Punches and Kicks) at 1:37 of Round 2
Johnny Soto (145.75) vs. Adil Benjilany (145.75)
Round 1Coming up next, Johnny Soto (4-1), fresh off a gritty victory over previously unbeaten Weber Almeida just two months ago at Bellator 258, faces Adil Benjilany (5-3), which the oddsmakers cap as even money. Venerable referee Kevin MacDonald gets the assignment. Soto starts the action with a powerful leg kick that Benjilany neatly moves out of range of. Benjilany flicks out a jab and follows it up with a leg kick that lands. Benjilany continues to work the jab and occasionally throws out the leg kick yet again, a successful tactic. Benjilany circles around the cage, but Soto soon shoots in. Benjilany briefly works the guillotine, but it's not successful. Suddenly, Soto picks him right up, marches him to the middle of the cage, and slams him down, Matt Hughes style. Soto is now in half-control, putting heavy top pressure on Benjilany. The Moroccan, for his part, is going for butterfly hooks while keeping his foe fairly close. Benjilany manages to regain full guard and he throws a few elbows from his back. Soto starts working from the top with hammerfists and the occasional left hand, although they're not very hard. Benjilany opens up his guard, looking to possible hip-escape, and after Soto does little, he does exactly that, regaining his feet. However, Soto is tough and takes Benjilany right back down, in half-guard again now. Soto looks to pass and softens Benjilany with a right hand. However, Benjilany gets his butterfly hooks in, pushes off, and regains his feet. Benjilany looks energetic striking again, throwing the jab, and now using the right cross too, which partially lands twice against a slowed down Soto. Benjilany throws a series of leg kicks, all at least partially successful. Soto lurches forward with punches, and Benjilany catches him with a left hook to the chin. Soto lands his first good strike with a left hook to the body now. Not long after, off a striking exchange, Soto shoots in again. Right as the round ends, he scores with an outside trip. Difficult round to score. In terms of damage, however, Benjilany clearly did more, while Soto did little from the top. 10-9 Benjilany
Round 2Benjilany tries to touch gloves with Soto, but Soto declines. Benjilany starts throwing a series of jabs again, and while Soto is blocking, they're opening up leg kicks for him, which work. Soto tries to clinch, but Benjilany neatly moves out of the way. Soto partially lands with a left hook to the head, which appears to be his best strike. Benjilany is moving well, scoring with leg kicks, and at one point, throwing a head kick that Soto manages to block. As Soto again comes forward, Benjilany connects with a nice left hook that slightly stumbles Soto. However, Soto notices an entry, pushes Benjilany against the cage, and then completes a double-leg with Benjilany's legs too close together. Yet again, Benjilany finds himself in full guard. However, he hip escapes nice, and stands back up. Soto continues pushing, and gets his foe up against the fence. Benjilany continues digging for underhooks, and eventually gets off. Benjilany's cardio is great, as he continues his endless attack of jabs and leg kicks. Soto comes forward, but Benjilany gets the better of the exchange, with his right cross more effective than Soto's left hook. Benjilany lands with an overhand right now, and Soto soon clinches again. Soto is still having success, cranking an underhook to get Benjilany to his knees. Benjilany uses a whizzer to stand back up, as Soto holds on for dear life. Soto tries a few old-school foot stomps with a minute remaining, and Benjilany retaliates with elbows to the side of the head. Soto is having a harder time to take Benjilany down now, and his attempt to wrench a single-leg fails. As ten seconds remain, Soto finally gets the takedown around the hips, but can do nothing with it. A clearer round. 10-9 Benjilany.
Round 3Benjilany races across the cage to begin the round, and immediately fires off a series of punches. He's no longer firing mere jabs, but 1-2s, as Soto covers up. Some of the punches are coming through, and Soto desperately shoots again. To his credit, he eventually manages to complete the takedown, as Benjilany sits against the cage. Soto goes for the Dagestani leg trap, but Benjilany pushes down on his head and wall-walks back up. Soto continues cranking the underhook and partially takes Benjilany's back, trying to get a hook in. Benjilany gets up yet again, however, as this gritty, grinding affair continues. Benjilany manages to turn into him and gain separations. Benjilany throws a series of jabs, many of which are landing now, as a cut opens up on Soto's left eye. Soto is trying to move his head, but he is firmly in retreat, and when Benjilany gets him against the fence, he scores with a nice left hook to the head. Soon after, he connects on a series of left hooks to the body. Halfway through the round, Soto desperately clinches. Benjilany uses a kimura grip to get away, but Soto keeps his grip. Credit to Soto for continuing to grapple effectively this late into a fight. His persistence is rewarded, as, with 100 seconds left, he gets Benjilany to his butt. He manages to stand up, too, and land a few small punches to Benjilany. Benjilany stands back up, pushing down on Soto's head, who continues to grind for a takedown, this time in the form of a single-leg. Benjilany steps out, however, and he punishes Soto with a beautiful punch combination. He continues attacking, with a series of hooks and even a head kick. Of course, Soto takes the first opportunity to clinch again, with 30 seconds left. He continues holding until 5 seconds left, when he eventually completes a meaningless takedown. At worst, Benjilany should win this, 2 rounds to 1. 10-9 Benjilany (30-27 Benjilany).
The Official ResultAdil Benjilany def. Johnny Soto via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Diana Avsaragova (126) vs. Gabriella Gulfin (124.75)
Round 1Undefeated 22 year-old flyweight prospect Diana Avsaragova (3-0) takes on Gabriella Gulfin (2-2) as a monster favorite, up to -1400 some places. Keeping them honest will be referee Kevin MacDonald. The two women touch gloves to begin, a nice contrast to the earlier fights. Not long after, they start throwing wild punches at one another, with neither one landing cleanly. They repeat this a few times more, but on the third exchange, Avsaragova lands several solid short right hands that bother Gulfin. Avsaragova is bouncing on her feet, shuffling laterally, mixing up directions well. Gulfin tries leg kicks, but they lack flexibility and miss. Avsaragova scores on a straight right and Gulfin's attempt to get it back with a punch misses. Gulfin then clinches off a series of punches, but Avsaragova defends well, and lands several knees to the body, and then a right cross off the break. The pace slows 2 minutes in from the furious opening. Gulfin tries a few jabs, but they're all far out of range. Her leg kick is then countered with a Avsaragova straight right. Avsaragova looks calm, continuing to circle away on the outside. Avsaragova scores with yet another straight right, which causes Gulfin to be off-balance. A while later, she lands a side-kick to the body. Gulfin comes forward with punches, but Avsaragova moves out of the way nicely. Gulfin comes forward, and Avsaragova steps off the center line and lands a 1-2. Gulfin tries a jumping kick, but again merely gets countered with a straight right for her efforts. Gulfin is having a real problem hitting her opponent. An attempted head kick ends with yet another Avsaragova flush connect with the straight right. As the round ends, Gulfin looks utterly confused about what to try next. Easy round for the Russian prospect. 10-9 Avsaragova.
Round 2Gulfin comes forward with wild punches, but Avsaragova is the only one who lands, again with the straight right. Gulfin lunges forward, and Avsaragova partially connects with the 1-2. Avsaragova now scores with a jab, possibly her first of the round, while Gulfin misses on a kick that misses by at least two feet. Avsaragova is occasionally flicking out the jab now, which is nice to see. Gulfin tries a right cross of her own, but it's blocked. Avsaragova continues to circle effectivley across the cage, and Gulfin is struggling to even be in position. A wild left hook by Gulfin misses. When she throws a series of punches, Avsaragova connects with another right cross. An attempted leg kick by Gulfin is countered hard by a 1-2 combination that snaps Gulfin's head back. Gulfin's body kick is blocked. A short while later, she gets tagged with a right cross yet again. Gulfin reaches with her punches, but Avsaragova is consistently out of range. Avsaragova is throwing some oblique kicks, but they're not hard enough to cause damage. Gulfin lands a few leg kicks now, but they're all quite weak. And as she tries for a head kick, Avsaragova lands possibly her hardest straight right of the fight so far. Avsaragova tries for a spinning back kick, and Gulfin tries to clinch. Avsaragova easily defends and throws Gulfin off. Avsaragova scores with a jab not long after. Gulfin is now bleeding noticeably from the nose. Gulfin comes forward and gets nailed with another right cross. Avsaragova continues circling to end the round, avoiding Gulfin's aggressions. Ending the round, Avsaragova opens up a little more, landing a series of straight punches, including jabs and crosses against a Gulfin who keeps swinging and missing. 10-9 Avsaragova.
Round 3Gulfin starts the round aggressively, exchanging a series of punches, but with Avsaragova getting the better of it. Gulfin tries a few kicks, but all are either avoided or blocked. Avsaragova lands another right cross that partially gets through. She then lands with a 1-2 as Gulfin continues following her. Another Gulfin head kick is blocked easily. A few more body kicks by Gulfin are blocked, too. Gulfin walks straight into a hard Avsaragova jab. Gulfin continues throwing kicks, and they're all easily blocked, including another head kick. Avsaragova sneaks another right cross through soon after. Gulfin's body kick is blocked, and a few punches miss by a foot. A Gulfin attempt at a left hook misses by a large margin, too. Avsaragova is throwing less, however, with fewer straight right connects. Halfway through the round, the pace slows a little. Gulfin finally lands a leg kick and in the ensuing exchange of punches, neither woman lands. Gulfin lands another leg kick soon after. Avsaragova tries a weak leg kick and Gulfin throws some wild punches, with one finally touching her opponent. Avsaragova continues circling, but her offense has waned greatly. She lands a weak leg kick with a minute left. Avsaragova throws a jab that partially hits the body of Gulfin. Gulfin keeps coming forward with punches, but Avsaragova evades them all. More body kicks are blocked, too. As the round ends, Avsaragova lands another oblique kick and a 1-2, as Gulfin's own strikes miss. Overall, a calm, professional performance by Avsaragova, if not a spectacular one. A closer round, but it's still a shut-out for her. 10-9 Avsaragova (30-27 Avsaragova)
The Official ResultDiana Avsaragova def. Gabriella Gulfin via Split Decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
Cody Law (145.75) vs. Theodore Macuka (146)
Round 1Highly regarded prospect Cody Law (3-0), all three of whose victories were in Bellator, is the biggest favorite in the card, as high as -1600, against Theodore Macuka (1-0). Referee Kerry Hatley will be watching closely. Macuka starts off with a very low stance, and lands a leg kick soon after the bell rings. He comes forward with punches, and Law moves out of range. Law goes for a right cross of his own, but it's telegraphed and Macucka moves out of range. Law scores with a hard leg kick that stumbles Macuka, though. He continues working the leg with hard kicks, and they're all scoring and badly stumbling Macuka. Law is scoring with some punches too, including a straight right that gets through a few times. Law goes upstairs with a head kick that partially gets through. Macuka is up against the cage and Law throws a barrrage of straight punches, which badly hurt Macuka, who is just barely able to get away. Law continues stalking him, and it's not long until he finds himself in a similar situation. He goes to work with a series of powerful, textbook punches, now including some nice hooks alongside the straight shots, as Macuka desperately covers up. Hatley has to rescue him. Very impressive performance by Law, a highly decorated wrestler who appears to have very potent striking already.
The Official ResultCody Law def. Theodore Macuka via TKO (Punches) at 1:54 of Round 1
Ronny Markes (252) vs. Said Sowma (245)
Round 1UFC veteran Ronny Markes (19-8), whose Bellator debut was a crushing defeat to Linton Vassell, faces friend and fellow training partner Said Sowma (6-2), who many believe deserved the nod over Tyrell Fortune in his last fight at Bellator 251. Working this fight will be equally big referee Dan Miragliotta. The two men hug to start the fight, a contrast to fighters refusing to touch gloves earlier. Markes lands a leg kick to begin the bout. A follow-up kick misses. Markes tries a head kick soon after, but Sowma backs up well. Markes lands another nice leg kick not long after. Sowma is looking to counter thus far, but hasn't thrown anything. Markes lands another leg kick. And then, Sowma explodes forward, landing a couple of hard left hooks that catch Markes perfectly on the chin. The Brazilian is completely out before he even lands, but Sowma lands a few follow-up shots before Dan Miragliotta stops the fight officially. Amazing; Sowma's first two connects ended the fight. He might have a very bright future at heavyweight, despite being short for the division.
The Official ResultSaid Sowma def. Ronny Markes via KO (Punches) at 1:09 of Round 2
Johnny Eblen (186) vs. Travis Davis (186)
Round 1Opening up the main card, we have undefeated, highly skilled prospect Johnny Eblen (8-0), who has improved by leaps and bounds in his Bellator outings, facing Travis Davis (10-4). Unsurprisingly, Eblen is the biggest favorite on the main card. Referee Kevin MacDonald will be keeping them honest. After a friendly glove touch, Eblen throws a few leg kicks that Davis avoids. Eblen does, however, connect on a 1-2 when Davis wades forward. Eblen is looking for the big straight right. Eblen lands a hard leg kick. A follow-up kick is caught by Davis, but his attempts to take the wrestler down are unsuccessful. Eblen lands a nice punch on the break. Eblen goes back to his leg kicks, and throws a left hook into overhand right, both of which Davis avoids. Davis again wades forward, and Eblen hits him with a straight left and then an overhand right that catches him behind the ear. Eblen throws some more big punches, a left hook into an overhand right that Davis avoids. Davis' own punches miss. Eblen ducks under another Davis punch to clinch. He briefly breaks out of it to land another punch, and then goes right back to the grind, landing some nice short punches. Eventually Eblen picks Davis up and slams him down, landing some nice punches. Davis hangs tough, though, standing right back up against the cage. The pace slows, as Davis seems to have gained a breather from trhe onslaught. However, with about 70 seconds left, Eblen disengages and cracks Davis hard with a left hook into an overhand right, and then drops down for the takedown. Davis again uses the cage to get back up, as Eblen continues to grind. Davis eventually manages to push Eblen off, and avoids his hooks on the break. Davis throws a few punches, but they're telegraphed and Eblen easily avoids them. Very dominant round for Eblen, almost a 10-8 but not quite. 10-9 Eblen.
Round 2Eblen lands a jab to start the round, and Davis counters with a hard calf kick, by far his best strike of the fight, leaving Eblen slightly limping. Eblen goes back to his own leg kicks, one of which lands solidly. Eblen goes for a left hook, but Davis ducks underneath and they clinch against the cage. Eblen briefly gets the takedown, but Davis continues showing his fine wall-walking skills. Undeterred, Eblen dumps Davis on his posterior with another takedown and tries to control the legs. It's to no avail, as Davis again wall-walks back up. Eblen gets a third takedown, but Davis is relentless, again rising to his feet against the cage. Eblen holds onto the waist from behind, and gets two more mat returns. After the second one, he manages some ground-and-pound with punches from behind, and finally, Davis isn't able to get up so quickly. Davis continues building a base, however, and gradually gets up to his knees, and then, his feet. Eblen gets yet ANOTHER mat return, with Davis crashing to the canvas, and yet again Davis gets up. This repeats several more times. How many takedowns has Eblen had by now? I lost count, but it has to be at least 50, right? Finally, Eblen disengages, and lands another hard left hook into overhand right. He soon clinches again, and this time, Davis offers less resistance as Eblen puts him solidly on his back. Eblen works with punches to the body as Davis looks to hip-escape, but with less energy now. Davis eventually sits up, but Eblen pushes him back down and later, opens up with some hard punches. As the round ends, Eblen continues working with the occasional solid punch from the top. Another dominant round, also close to a 10-8. 10-9 Eblen.
Round 3Starting the round, Davis points to his chin and dares Eblen to hit him. A strange strategy given how badly he has been dominated. Eblen eventually comes forward and catches him with a hook. Davis is unable to get a receipt. Davis comes forward, and Eblen lands a solid left hook that puts a temporary stop to Davis' trash talk, which is audible. Davis keeps coming forward, frequently with his hands down, and eats another left hook for his troubles. Eventually, Eblen decides to wrestle again, and after some grinding, completes a double-leg agianst the cage. Davis has a kimura grip, but he is solidly down, not instantly wall-walking back up. Eblen lands a few punches to the body, and soon transitions to the back. However, Davis uses the opportunity to stand back up, but not for long, as Eblen hits a beautiful suplex, slamming Davis on his head. Davis gets back up though, and Eblen holds onto his waist, landing the occasional knee to the thigh. Eblen drops down and gets an ankle pick for yet another takedown. With 2 minutes remaining, Eblen lands a few punches to Davis' body. Davis gives up his back, but posts back up against the cage as Eblen is unable to get his hooks in. Eventually, Eblen gets yet another mat return when Davis stands up. He manages to lace a leg in and with a little over a minute remaining, Eblen is going for the rear-naked choke. Davis slumps to the canvas, but is going to fight the choking arm. Eblen gives up on it and starts firing punches to Davis' head. With Eblen's body draped over him, Davis rises yet again, but is thoroughly exhausted now. With 10 seconds left, Eblen tries to launch Davis for another suplex, but can't quite get it. He settles for yet another takedown. Bizarrely, Davis raises his hands in victory to end the fight. This was yet another completely one-sided round, but I can't quite score this 10-8, either. Neverthelss, a very one-sided beating administered by Johnny Eblen. 10-9 Eblen (30-27 Eblen).
The Official ResultJohnny Eblen def. Travis Davis via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-26, 30-26)
Arlene Blencowe (146) vs. Dayana Silva (146)
Round 1Two-time Bellator women's featherweight title challenger Arlene Blencowe (13-8), who arguably deserved the decision in her first attempt, against Julia Budd, faces Dayana Silva (9-6), who lost a split decision to that very same Budd a couple of months ago. Referee Dan Miragliotta will be keeping a keen eye on the proceedings. They begin the fight cautiously, and Blencowe lands a leg kick to start the hostilities. Not long after, she lands a second. And then, a third, which bothers Silva. Blencowe then scores with another leg kick, and Silva's attempt to counter misses the mark. Silva tries a 1-2, but Blencowe calmly steps back out of range. Blencowe goes upstairs with a head kick, but it's blocked. Silva manages to catch Blencowe's leg kick, and Silva lands her first strike, a right cross to the head. A few Blencowe punches miss the mark, as Silva retreats. Blencowe lands another leg kick, this one less effective, and Silva's counter, while it misses, is closer. Both fighters go for straight punches, but manag to evade those of the opponent. Silva now lands a leg kick of her own. Blencowe comes forward with punches halfway through the round, and a straight right partially gets through. Silva lands another leg kick soon after. Silva throws an aggressive 1-2 that Blencowe just barely avoids, and Blencowe comes back with one of her own, only one of which touches Silva slightly. Blencowe has more success with a left uppercut to the body followed by a straight right. Silva throws a 1-2, with the cross having soome effect. They trade punches, and Blencowe lands another leg kick afterwards. Silva lands a couple of her own, but they're less solid. They are going strike-for-strike a lot, but Blencowe's punches are more technical and harder. Blencowe comes forward, landing a left hook to the head and a right cross that is blocked. Blencowe lands a leg kick. Silva shoots a double-leg, but Blencowe easily defends and knees the Brazilian to the body. Competitive round, but one clearly won by the Australian veteran. 10-9 Blencowe.
Round 2Silva starts the round with a leg kick, but Blencowe avoids it. Silva tries a few more with no success. However, a 1-2 has the cross partially land. Blencowe then starts her own offense, landing a solid leg kick, and then partially landing with a left hook. Blencowe starts landing some straight rights now, and gets more aggressive, with Silva looking flustered. Blencowe jumps forward with a left hook, and Silva retreats straight back, with no thought to her own offense. Silva tries a 1-2, but it's slow and Blencowe easily evades just by stepping back a little. Blencowe comes forward with her own punches, but Silva manages to partially counter with a straight right. Blencowe throws a left hook, and Silva ducks down for a takedown attempt. Silva tries to lift Blencowe, but can't quite finish it, with Silva settling for pushing Blencowe into the fence. Blencowe fights for underhooks, and after getting some separation, spins off the cage. She soon lands a right cross for good measure. Blencowe throws a head kick, but Silva happened to be coming forward, with it hitting her side. Silva lands a leg kick, but a follow-up one is solidly checked. Blencowe throws a few 1-2s, but Silva largely avoids them. Silva lands a straight right to Blencowe's stomach. Blencowe lands a few solid leg kicks. Silva tries another double-leg late in the round, but Blencowe stuffs it with ease and punishes Silva with a knee to the body. Undeterred, Silva gets a takedown with 10 seconds left in the round and goes for punches, although none land solidly. 10-9 Blencowe.
Round 3Blencowe starts the final stanza pumping her jab, though none of them land. Silva is aggressive, throwing some punches and chaining a body kick to the end that lands. Blencowe lands a leg kick, but Silva lands a straight right as a counter. Blencowe paws with a jab, and Silva tries a leg kick that gets checked. Suddenly, Blencowe lands a left hook that wobbles Silva. Blencowe seizes the opportunity, creaming her with a straight right that floors her. Blencowe jumps on her with hammerfists, and Dan Miragliotta has no choice but to stop the contest. A very nice performance by Arlene Blencowe, who at 38, is as good as ever.
The Official ResultArlene Blencowe def. Dayana Silva via TKO (Punches) at 1:00 of Round 3
Matheus Mattos (135.75) vs. C.J. Hamilton (135.5)
Round 1Talented Brazilian martial artist Mattheus Mattos (12-2) faces Cee Jay Hamilton (15-8), curiously nicknamed "The Autobot", in the middle of the main card. Yet again, our referee is Kerry Hatley. Hamilton tries a leg kick to start, and Mattos dodges it neatly. Hamilton tries a crazy spinning back kick, but it misses. Hamilton continues being aggressive, but Mattos floors him with a flush left hook connect. Mattos takes the opportunity to go for a guillotine choke attempt, but it's the wrong choice, as Hamilton fights it off and gets back to range. Hamilton is more cautious now. He eventually goes for a head kick, but Mattos' block causes Hamilton to stumble. Hamilton is now circling along the perimeter of the cage as Mattos stalks him, looking for an opening. Mattos lands a leg kick and Hamilton clinches, although Mattos is the one to push him against the fence. Hamilton eventually disengages. Mattos goes for a huge overhand right that Hamilton ducks under just in time, but Hamilton's attempts to punish it with straight punches are blocked. A Mattos kick is blocked, and not long after, Hamilton's head kicks is again blocked. Mattos goes for a huge head kick that Hamilton ducks under. Mattos pressures and Hamilton throws out a punch combination, but every single strike only connects with air. Mattos lands a thudding body kick as Hamilton is against the cage. He decides to go back to the strike and is rewarded with an even harder connect. Suddenly, Mattos connects with another had left hook and unleashes a barrage of punches, with many getting through and hurting Hamilton. To Hamilton's credit, he manages to recover and get away. They clinch, and Hamilton lands his best strikes of the round, a series of knees to the body. Near the end of the round, Mattos lands another huge body kick. And then he ends the stanza with one more. Utterly dominant and damaging round for the Brazilian. 10-8 Mattos.
Round 2Mattos calmly stalks his prey, Hamilton, to begin the round, and eventually fires with the body kick that has been so successful thus far. Hamilton tries a front kick, but Mattos avoids it. He tries a spinning back kick, but that is avoided by many feet. Hamilton tries punches now, a combination, but Mattos avoids all of them with ease. Mattos scores with an absolutely gorgeous front kick straight to the chin that causes Hamilton to retreat. Hamilton tries a side kick, but Mattos keeps advancing. With Hamilton against the cage, Mattos lands a straight right to the body, causing Hamilton to drop his hands, then follows it up with a right uppercut to the chin, and then a left hook that utterly plasters Hamilton onto the canvas. Hamilton covers up desperately as Mattos hammers away, and Hatley is forced to cause a halt to the contest. Fantastic performance by Mattos!
The Official ResultMattheus Mattos def. Cee Jay Hamilton via TKO (Punches) at 1:33 of Round 2
Tyrell Fortune (233.5) vs. Matt Mitrione (261)
Round 1In the co-main event, long-time UFC mainstay Matt Mitrione (13-8), whose career highlights including a 41 second knockout of Derrick Lewis and a 74 second knockout of Fedor Emelianenko, will look to upset heavyweight prospect Tyrell Fortune (10-1). Keeping the big men in line will, logically, be "Big" Dan Miragliotta. No glove touch starts this one, despite the two being friends and training partners. It's cautious to start, with Fortune circling on the outside. However, 35 seconds in, Fortune shoots in with a double-leg and easily gets it. Fortune throws a series of hammerfists, all of them landing, as Mitrione finally manages to turn away. Mitrione gets on his knees to try to get up, but Fortune uses a wrestling ride to control him, all while continuing to jaw off. Fortune eventually starts throwing punches from the wrestling ride position as Mitrione is unable to get up from his knees and continues eating blows. Mitrione then taps out. A disappointing fight, to say the least. After the fight, Mitrione is screaming and cursing like crazy about a headbutt that occurred when Fortune shot in for the takedown, but one that Mitrione initiated by ducking down at the wrong time. I wish Mitrione had that same fire and energy for the actual fight.
The Official ResultTyrell Fortune def. Matt Mitrione via TKO (Submission to Punches) at 1:45 of Round 1
Bellator Flyweight Title Fight:
Velasquez (125) vs. Denise
Round 1In the main event, undefeated Bellator women's flyweight champion Juliana Velasquez (11-0), an excellent fighter who doesn't get enough credit for her skills, takes on Denise Kielholtz (6-2), a top women's kickboxer who has made huge strides in MMA, finishing all four of her last opponents, two via submission. Getting the final assignment of the night is referee Kevin MacDonald. They begin cautiously, with Kielholtz scoring on an inside leg kick to start the championship bout. She soon scores with an outside leg kick. A third attempt, however, is checked and Velasquez partially counters with a straight right. Kielholtz charges forward with a barrage of punches, but Velasquez retreats and turns the corner, avoiding them. Kielholtz again comes forward, throwing punches punctuated by an overhand left, but Velasquez calmly avoids it. Kielholtz goes back to her leg kicks, but they're largely checked by the champion. Kielholtz throws another punch flurry, and this time, a left hook partially connects. Velasquez shoots out the occasional jab, but it's missing and Kielholtz uses it as an opportunity to explode forward with punches. Another Velasquez right jab is firmly blocked by Kielholtz. The challenger then scores with another leg kick, this one not checked. Kielholtz fires a 1-2, and the straight right touches Velasquez. Both fighters have held steady with solid defense thus far, though. Kielholtz tests Velasquez with a head kick, but the Brazilian blocks it. Kielholtz now goes for a 1-2, aiming the straight right to the body, but Velasquez evades that, too. Another 1-2 is more successful, with the 2 touching the Brazilian. With 30 seconds left, Kielholtz throws another punch combination, and this time, several land hard and flush on the Brazilian's chin, backing her up. It's easily the best damage of the round, and Velasquez's nose is slightly bloody. Nothing significant happens for the rest of the round. A clear stanza for the challenger. 10-9 Kielholtz.
Round 2Velasquez begins the round with a solid leg kick. Kielholtz tries to counter, but is unable to reach the mark with her punches. Kielholtz touches Velasquez with her own leg kicks, trying to bait her forward more than hurting her. Velasquez lands her first jab, and when Kielholtz comes forward, lands a cross. Velasquez than lands another stiff jab soon after. Kielholtz reaches badly with a straight right, and Velasquez avoids it. Velasquez avoids another Kielholtz right cross. Kielholtz throws a flurry, but not only does Velasquez avoid it, but she lands a right hook for good measure, too. Kielholtz continues to struggle reaching the champ in this second round, missing with jabs and right crosses. However, halfway through the round, she finally has some success with another flurry, landing a left hook that causes Velasquez to fall back. Velasquez forces a nice jab through after they reset. Finally, with less than 2 minutes into the round, Velasquez tries to grapple. Kielholtz easily stuffs it, although Velasquez scores with a knee to the body on the break. Kielholtz tries a few more flurries, but Velasquez is ready and avoids the blows retreating back. Kielholtz throws a 1-2 and the cross partially lands on the body. They tangle with 30 seconds left, and while Velasquez partially lands a jab, Kielholtz partially connects with a left hook twice. As the round ends, Kielholtz lands a right cross to the body, and then, for good measure, another left hook. Much closer round, but I think Kielholtz just barely stole it at the end. 10-9 Kielholtz.
Round 3Kielholtz beings the round with a 1-2, with the straight right landing nicely to Velasquez's body. Some follow-up punches from the challenger all miss, however. Kielholtz is getting a little undisciplined, with her flurries getting less technical. After one such flurry, Velasquez lands a nice right hook. Velasquez gets back to her jab a little, and has some success with it. Velasquez throws a calf kick that partially lands, but Kielholtz counters with a much more meaningful right cross. Velasquez starts circling at range and lands a nice jab for her efforts. Velasquez throws a 1-2, but Kielholtz retreats out of range. Velasquez is working the jab mroe now, and she gets some nice connects. Kielholtz partially sneaks a left hook through. Kielholtz evades a Velasquez jab and goes for a spinning backfist, but it doesn't work. Kielholtz is a little too aggressive coming forward and runs into a Velasquez jab, as she is noticeably bleeding from her nose. Velasquez keeps pot-shotting with her jab, and Kielholtz lands a few leg kicks, but none with any heft. Kielholtz closes the distance, but Velasquez lands a knee to the body to get her to back up. Kielholtz's flurries are wilder and slower now, and are having little effect. With 20 seconds left, Velasquez shoots in and this time, easily gets the takedown. She doesn't do anything with it as time runs out. A clear round for the champion. 10-9 Velasquez.
Round 4Kielholtz throws a 1-2 to begin the round, but it misses. She does, however, land a leg kick. She manages to slip a Velasquez jab, but is ineffective with her own straight punch. Kielholtz blocks a Velasquez cross and lands a leg kick. Kielholtz then partially connects with a cross of her own. A flurry is more technical and does touch Velasquez as well. The Brazilian is being awfully passive so far this round, possibly due to some fatigue. Kielholtz connects with a leg kick and Velasquez hits her with a jab, possibly her first connect of the round. Velasquez follows it up with several more straight connects, as she is starting to open a little more this stanza. A 1-2 from Velasquez touches Kielholtz, and a short while later, she connects solidly with a jab. Kielholtz, for her part, throws a few solitary crosses that are all either blocked or avoided. Kielholtz comes forward with another flurry, but Velasquez moves her head well and avoids them or takes the blows on her shoulders. Kielholtz lands a leg kick. They then exchange punches, and Velasquez gets slightly the better of it. Velasquez dodges a leg kick, and then, a series of Kielholtz punches, before engaging with her own, that partially land. With 30 seconds left, Velasquez goes for another shot, but she is stuffed this time and eats a punch on her way up. With a few seconds left, Velasquez and Kielholtz both land with straight punches. Another very, very close round. This one I will give to the champion, and I have it all tied up going in the final, 5th round. 10-9 Velasquez
Round 5Velasquez goes for a kick to begin the round, and Kielholtz tags her with a right cross counter that lands flush and stumbles Velasquez back, possibly the best connect of the entire fight. Velasquez lands a jab and then avoids return fire from Kielholtz. Kielholtz lands a leg kick, and when Velasquez answers with one of her own, Kielholtz scores with a second one. Kielholtz lands another leg kick, but this time Velasquez partially counters with her punches. Kielholtz lands a nice overhand left as Velasquez can't pull her head away in time. Kielholtz lands a leg kick but then slips, as Velasquez tries to take advantage. She overextends, however, as Kielholtz scores with another solid right cross. They clinch soon after, but soon break free from one another. Kielholtz tries a few 1-2s, but none land. An overhand right misses, too. However, a left hook from Kielholtz lands this time. Velasquez lands a nice straight left, by far her best connect of the round, although not as good as several Kielholtz lands. Kielholtz keeps coming forward and lands several left hooks. With 40 seconds left, Velasquez shoots again, but Kielholtz sensed it and easily stuffs the atempt. They trade a couple of crosses in the center of the ring. Kielholtz then comes forward and scores with several straight rights, as Velasquez is retreating as the round ends. Impressive performance by the challenger Kielholtz, and I have her taking this one. 10-9 Kielholtz (48-47 Kielholtz).
The Official ResultJuliana Velasquez def. Denise Kielholtz via Split Decision (48-47, 47-48, 48-47)
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