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Liz Carmouche-Juliana Velasquez Flyweight Title Rematch Booked for Bellator 289



After a controversial ending to their first meeting, Liz Carmouche and Juliana Velasquez are going to run it back at Bellator 289.

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The California-based promotion confirmed the booking on Wednesday following an initial report from MMAFighting.com. Bellator 289 takes place on Dec. 9 at Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Conn., and the evening’s main card airs on Showtime. The card will feature the bantamweight grand prix semifinals, as Raufeon Stots meets Danny Sabatello, while Magomed Magomedov takes on Patrick Mix.

Carmouche took the flyweight crown from Velasquez in their first bout at Bellator 278 this past April. Velasquez appeared to be well on her way to a decision triumph when Carmouche trapped in her in a mounted crucifix and landed a series of elbows to earn a technical knockout victory 4:48 into the fourth round of their clash at Neil S. Blaisdell Center in Honolulu, Hawaii. Velasquez protested the stoppage and ultimately filed an appeal, arguing that none of the strikes were significant enough to warrant a stoppage. The Hawaii State Boxing Commission ultimately denied Velasquez’s appeal while supporting referee Mike Beltran’s decision to “err on the side of caution.”

Carmouche, 38, is 4-0 in Bellator since leaving the UFC following a loss to Valentina Shevchenko in a 125-pound title bout in August 2019. Before moving to flyweight, Carmouche challenged for bantamweight gold in two different organizations, falling to Ronda Rousey in the UFC and to Marloes Coenen in Strikeforce. Camrouche’s resume includes victories over the likes of Shevchenko, Jessica Andrade, Katlyn Chookagian, Lauren Murphy, Jennifer Maia and Vanessa Porto, among others.

Velasquez was victorious in her first 12 professional outings before the defeat against Carmouche. She claimed the flyweight belt with a five-round verdict over Ilima-Lei Macfarlane at Bellator 254 and defended it in a split-decision triumph against Denise Kielholtz at Bellator 262.

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