Bellator Fighting Championships announced today that an anticipated featherweight title bout between champion Joe Warren and season 4 tournament winner Patricio “Pitbull” Freire will act as the headliner for the promotion’s first show in Canada on July 23 in Rama, Ontario.
Bellator 47 will be part of the organization’s summer series and will take place at Casino Rama, a native-run casino just northeast of Orillia.
According to Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney, the overwhelming demand for a show in Canada and the recent decision by the Ontario government to sanction MMA prompted the decision to bring an event to a popular destination like Casino Rama, where the province’s first event was held in April.
“Our fans have been asking us to come to Canada since our first season,” says Rebney. “Casino Rama is an unbelievable venue and should make for a magical night of fights at Bellator 47.”
According to Casino Rama media relations manager, Jenna Hunter, the show will be one of several Bellator will be holding at the casino this year.
“Another benefit is the number of events fans can expect to see. The tournament format allows fans to really latch onto a fighter and watch them rise (or fall) through the ranks,” Hunter points out. “Unlike other events, we will be presenting several shows a year and that’s a HUGE plus for MMA fans in Ontario that no one else is offering them.”
The event will also play host to the semi-finals of Bellator’s Featherweight Summer Series Tournament, which includes Ronnie Mann, Marlon Sandro, Nazareno Malegarie and Pat Curran. The winners of the Bellator 46 June 25 quarter-final bouts will fight on the card.
Bellator 47 will air LIVE on MTV2.