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Tag: Bellator

Bellator 107 Recap: Cheick Kongo Wins in Typical Cheick Kongo Fashion, Joe Warren Scores TKO Over Travis Marx


(Photo via Bellator MMA)

Bellator 107 was a crucial show for Bellator. Over one million people were exposed to their product last week. Did they wow anyone who decided to tune in for a second week in a row?

Yes and no.

They made a poor decision in starting the card with a fight between virtually unknown fighter Derek Campos and disappointing British prospect Martin Stapleton. Any converts from the previous event likely switched channels after this fight started; it was that bad. The only notable part of this contest was when Stapleton’s knee almost went out (or at least that’s what it looked like) during a spinning backfist attempt, resulting in a crazy jig. Campos won via unanimous decision.

Fortunately, the second fight of the night picked up the pace a little bit. After a lackluster first round, the middleweight tournament final between Mikkel Parlo and Brennan Ward ended in fireworks. In what can only be described as “beast mode,” Ward battered Parlo’s body with sledgehammer-like punches (GIF via @ZProphet_MMA), and then started teeing off on Parlo’s head. Ward battered Parlo so badly that the fight was stopped while Parlo was still standing. It was one of the best displays of the pure violence inherent in MMA in recent memory.

Get the run down of the co-main and main event after the jump.

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‘Chandler vs. Alvarez 2′ Pulls 1.1 Million Viewers For Largest Audience in Bellator History


(The shot of the year, from a different angle. Photo via Facebook.com/mstracylee)

It’s official: Bellator’s canceled pay-per-view was the greatest thing that ever happened to the promotion. (Called it!) According to a press release distributed today by Spike TV, Bellator 106: Chandler vs. Alvarez 2 delivered 1.1 million average viewers during the Spike telecast, which made it the most-watched event in Bellator history and the most watched mixed martial arts show on television this fall. As the release goes on to explain:

The “Chandler-Alvarez II” fight card peaked at 1.4 million viewers at 11:17pm and reached its high mark with Men 18-49 with a 1.1 rating for the Alvarez-Chandler bout. The telecast also ranked #2 in cable in its timeslot with Men 18-49.

For fans who missed the fight, or who recorded it but the end was cut off due to the extraordinary length of the event, Spike TV will replay the Chandler-Alvarez II main event bout on Friday, November 8 at 8:00pm ET/PT. The replay will lead into a live Bellator event featuring heavyweights Cheick Kongo vs. Peter Graham and a co-feature with lightweight contenders Joe Warren and Travis Marx.

Note to Bellator: Don’t brag about the “extraordinary length” of your event. That shit was nearly four hours long, and people almost died out here. (It’s worth noting that the audience peaked well before the main event had even begun.) On the plus side, it must feel amazing for Bellator to clown the UFC with that “most watched mixed martial arts show on television this fall” line, especially at a time when the UFC is probably kind of sensitive about that sort of thing.

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Post-Bellator 106 News Roundup: Bjorn Rebney Plans Another PPV, Alvarez Tweets Picture of F*cked Up Eye, and More


(The purple hue really brings out the chestnut color of Alvarez’s eyebrows. / via twitter)

The best Sundays are post-event Sundays. There’s tons of great articles to read about the valiant, violent displays of physical fortitude that occurred the night before.

Usually, there’s not enough interest in a Bellator card to warrant a slew of interesting sound bites and pictures. But Bellator 106 was different. Bellator 106 was the canceled PPV that became one of the most important free, non-UFC televised cards in MMA history. Let’s look at some of the fallout, the crucial and the just plain cool.

Dana White, predictably, had nothing positive to say about Bellator 106 (but that’s not just because he’s a jerk; the show really wasn’t that great). Bjorn Rebney responded to Dana’s comments about karmic justice like a shady Winnebago salesman, saying “If karma is that we just put on the best mixed martial arts fight I’ve ever seen, that’s karma I’ll take big boatloads of.”

Rebney had some other important statements. He pessimistically dismissed the future of Bellator’s “Ultimate Fighter” knockoff “Fight Master.” Typical of post-Viacom buyout Bellator, Rebney didn’t do this without taking a shot at the UFC.

“Reality fight TV is having its difficulties now. You can see it in the UFC’s ratings, they’re having the lowerst-rated TUF they’ve had in the history of the show,” he said (he was right, by the way).

Read about Bellator’s next PPV, King Mo’s surprising salary, and more after the jump.

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Bellator 106 Recap: Alvarez Edges Chandler, Newton Picks Apart King Mo, Riggs Becomes The “Fight Master”


(Photo via Tracy Lee/CombatLifestyle.com)

Bellator should be thankful that this card never made it to PPV; the main event was incredible but paying $45 for the rest of the card would’ve turned people off to Bellator for life.

The night started off promising. Mike “The Marine” Richman met Akop Stepanyan and won via TKO in the first round. The match was well fought and exciting.

The same couldn’t be said for the next fight on the card: Joe Riggs vs. Mike Bronzoulis. The two men fought for the honor of being Bellator’s first “Fight Master” winner, a title as dubious as being the first XFL champion. Riggs won a wrestling-heavy decision that sedated the crowd and likely had television audience flipping channels.

Pat Curran vs. Daniel Straus, the first of three title fights on the card, followed Riggs-Bronzoulis. This fight didn’t wow viewers either. There were a few spurts of action — as well as a point-deduction for an illegal knee that essentially KO’d Straus in the third round — but it was a generally lackluster affair that saw Straus take Curran’s featherweight title and in doing so avenge his 2009 loss to Curran.

But Straus wasn’t the only fighter looking to avenge a loss at Bellator 106. Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal sought victory over Emanuel Newton, who humiliated Lawal with a spinning backfist knockout back at Bellator 90. Lawal failed in this task.

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[EXCLUSIVE] Michael Chandler Doesn’t Mind Being Overlooked as Long as He’s Champion


(Photo via Bellator)

By Elias Cepeda

Throughout the UFC and Bellator’s highly-publicized bidding war over lightweight Eddie Alvarez, I couldn’t help but wonder what Michael Chandler felt about all this. There was Alvarez, hard sought-after and recognized as one of the best fighters not already in the UFC, and there was Chandler — the man who’d beaten him soundly in an incredible fight and took the Bellator title.

Chandler was the champion. Chandler had beaten Alvarez, yet his opponent was the one who had corporate giants fighting for him. I got a chance to speak with the Bellator lightweight champion as he heads into his rematch with Alvarez this Saturday at Bellator 106.

The 24-year-old fighter was philosophical as he looked back at being the overlooked champion. “Unfortunately it’s not a perfect world and fighters can’t just train and fight,” Chandler says of Alvarez’s legal battles.

“There’s all kinds of things that go around it. All that bickering…I try not to worry about all the outside stuff. People are going to say things and talk. You can read into things and they can affect you mentally. That’s no good for you at all. It’s never good to get caught up in all that. The reality and beauty of the situation is that we are professional athletes with a platform that people are going to hear and see. It’s good to be on a platform like that. It is something to keep me grounded and excited for November 2. I want to prove myself.”

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You Guys are Never Going to Believe Who Bellator Chose to Fight Rampage Jackson Next…

…that’s right, a recently fired UFC veteran! NOW I’VE SEEN EVERYTHING!

Co-Main Event podcast co-host and former CP staff writer (Old Step Dad?) Chad Dundas said all that really needed to be said when he summed up the Tito Ortiz neck injury/Bellator PPV cancellation fracas as “the most Tito thing ever.” With that in mind, I think it’s safe to say that the most recent development in the shuffle to find a replacement opponent for Quinton Jackson can be described as “the most Bellator thing ever.”

Ariel Helwani broke the news just minutes ago that everyone’s favorite tiger-humping former UFC light heavyweight champion will face Joey “The Mexicutioner” Beltran at Bellator 108 on November 15th in Atlantic City, New Jersey. The Internet’s reaction is below:

And so, Bellator wages on with its plan to acquire every last steroid-using washout the UFC has to offer in the hopes of somehow competing with the very promotion they are shamelessly poaching from. Not since Paddy’s Dollars have I seen a business model so woefully misguided…

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[EXCLUSIVE] Muhammed ‘King Mo’ Lawal Talks His Heated Rematch with Emanuel Newton, Balancing Pro-Wrestling and MMA + More


(Photo via Bellator.)

By Elias Cepeda

Bellator light heavyweight Muhammed Lawal remembers the moment when the switch flipped for him regarding Emanuel Newton. Before they fought this past February at Bellator 90, the former training partners were respectful of one another in public statements.

After Newton shocked Lawal and the world with a spinning backfist KO in the first round, however, “The Hardcore Kid” began to suggest that Lawal had simply received his comeuppance for being cocky. To Lawal, who says he made an effort to not trash talk Newton because of their mutual friend Antonio McKee, it was a criticism that came out of nowhere and it created harder feelings than simply losing had engendered.

“A friend told me that [Newton] had said I was cocky and got what I deserved in an interview and I was like, ‘what?’” Newton remembers. (Ed note: I’d like to think it was one of those extended, overly-dramatic “Say WHAAAAAAAAT?” kind of whats. I’m not even here. -Danga)

It’s not that Lawal is unaware of how he comes off when he saunters into the ring or cage wearing a crown and a cape, it’s just that he didn’t expect to be called that after a fight where he’d made a special effort to not do much trash-talking.

“I don’t know what he’s doing. Maybe he’s trying to play to the media so they can write about him, but I didn’t go into that fight cocky and I didn’t fight cocky. I know the mistake I made in that fight and it was a mistake I’d made before and was working on.”

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[EXCLUSIVE] Bellator Champ Pat Curran Is Making the Most of His Short Window of Opportunity


(“The goal was to make a good living doing this and I’m already there. I want to see how far I can take it.” Photo via Esther Lin/MMAFighting)

By Elias Cepeda

Of late, much of the big news that comes from Bellator has to do with contract clauses and disputes, lawsuits and high-profile cancellations. Because of that, one can imagine it being difficult for a marquee Bellator fighter like Pat Curran to focus on simply doing his job well.

However, the featherweight champion insists that he doesn’t keep up on other people’s news and stays focused on what matters — fighting. “I don’t like to think about it too much,” he tells CagePotato.

“As a fighter I have a very short career window and I have to make the most of where I’m at right now. I’m on a main stage with a major organization that gives me the opportunity to stay busy and make a pretty decent living.”

Having a tough opponent in front of you can help a fighter keep focused as well and Curran has exactly that this Saturday at Bellator 106 when he defends his belt against Bellator Season 6 tournament winner Daniel Straus.

“He’s very talented and very well rounded,” Curran says of the challenger.

“He throws a lot of straight, long punches and follows up with kicks. He does a very good job mixing up striking with wrestling. He’s good at clinching with guys and wearing them out. I’m definitely not just expecting a striking fight like I had with ‘Pitbull’ [Patricio Freire]. I’m prepared for anything. If it becomes a striking match, I’m ready for it. If it goes to the ground, I’m ready to mix it up.”

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The Unsupportable Opinion: Death Was the Best Outcome for Bellator’s Inaugural PPV


(MMA gets another PPV that never was)

When your dog is terminally ill, you put it down.

When the sales for your inaugural PPV are anemic, you should do the same.

Officially, Bellator canceled the PPV because Tito Ortiz withdrew from the main event bout versus Rampage Jackson, and not because of the PPV’s dubious chances of success. But the result is the same as if they had just canceled it outright: Bellator saves face.

Ortiz’s injury and the resulting cancellation of the PPV were a godsend for Bellator. Why? Let’s look at the most likely scenario for what could’ve happened if Bellator went on with their PPV — both if Ortiz had gotten injured and if he hadn’t.

Scenario 1, Ortiz doesn’t get injured and the PPV goes on:

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28-0 Featherweight Phenom Julio Cesar Neves Will Be Cartwheel-Kicking Dudes in Bellator Now


(Finally, we can use the terms “hot prospect” and “Bellator” in the same sentence without being sarcastic. / Photo via Sherdog)

At 19-and-a-half years old, Julio Cesar Neves Junior is off to the fastest start in MMA history. In just two years of professional competition, the Brazilian featherweight prodigy has compiled a 28-0 record, with 25 wins by stoppage. “Morceguinho” has already blown past the career-opening win streaks posted by Megumi Fujii (who won her first 22 fights) and Khabib Nurmagomedov (who’s won 21 and counting), and he’s within arm’s reach of the 32-fight win streak that Igor Vovchanchyn earned from 1996-1999 — to date the longest MMA win streak unbroken by draws or no-contests.

We first introduced you to Neves back in August, when he picked up his 26th win by Capoeira cartwheel-kicking the shit out of Dener Dos Santos. “We have a feeling this one will get him noticed by the big leagues,” we wrote…and indeed it has. MMAFighting informs us that Neves has just signed a contract with Bellator, and will make his promotional debut at an event to be named later.

Alright, so maybe Bellator isn’t the biggest of big leagues, but it’s a hell of an opportunity for a teenager from Santa Catarina. According to MMAFighting, Neves is the younger brother of Rafael “Morcego” Silva, who won Bellator’s 2013 Summer Series Bantamweight Tournament this year, and is riding an impressive 13-fight win streak himself. Can the Morcego/guinho brothers become the next Pitbull brothers? And how much longer will Neves’s win streak last now that he’ll be facing a higher level of competition?

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