A Bellator press release describes it as the “chance of a lifetime” for Julius Anglickas.
Originally an alternate in the promotion’s light heavyweight grand prix, Anglickas will step in for Anthony Johnson against reigning 205-pound champ Vadim Nemkov in the Bellator 268 main event on Oct. 16. Promotion officials announced the new semifinal pairing after Johnson was forced to withdraw from the tournament due to an undisclosed illness.
Bellator 268 takes place at the Footprint Center in Phoenix and will also see Ryan Bader square off against Corey Anderson in the other half of the light heavyweight bracket. Anglickas’ original opponent, Karl Albrektsson, will now square off against Dovletdzhan Yagshimuradov on the preliminary card. Two other bouts were also confirmed for the event: Jaylon Bates vs. Raphael Montini de Lima at bantamweight and Mukhamed Berkhamov vs. Jaleel Willis at welterweight. The main card will air on Showtime at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT, while prelims stream on the Bellator MMA YouTube channel, the Showtime Sports YouTube channel and Pluto TV beginning at 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT.
A winner on Season 3 of Dana White’s Contender Series, Anglickas has been victorious in his first three Bellator appearances. Most recently, the Lithuanian fighter earned a unanimous verdict over Gregory Millard at Bellator 257.
After claiming the light heavyweight throne with a second-round TKO of Bader at Bellator 244, Nemkov improved to 2-0 against Phil Davis with a five-round verdict in the quarterfinals of the grand prix at Bellator 257. Nemkov is currently on an eight-fight winning streak overall.