The card has been afflicted by a slew of injuries and has undergone multiple replacements but is now set in stone as UFC 149 comes live out of the Scotiabank Saddledome in Calgary, Alberta, Canada on June 21. “The Menace” Chris Clements (11-4) takes on “Deep Waters” Matt Riddle (6-3) in the main card opener. “Bad Boy” Brian Ebersole (50-14-1) steps in on short notice to take on James Head (8-2) in a welterweight battle. Heavyweight action is set for the Canadian crowd as “The Savage” Shawn Jordan (13-3) and Cheick Kongo (17-7-2) are locked to do battle in the card’s anchor. In the main event, “The California Kid” Urijah Faber (26-5) will clash with the always lethal Renan Barao (28-1-1) with the interim bantamweight title on the line. The co-main event has its own share of buzz surrounding it as “The Barbarian” Tim Boetsch (15-4) replaces an injured “All American” Brian Stann to welcome the long-awaited UFC debut of former Bellator champion “Lightning” Hector Lombard (31-2).
Perhaps one of the greatest nights of MMA history was witnessed on Saturday, November 19. Among the historic events was Bellator 58 at the Seminole Hard Rock Casino in Hollywood, Florida, featuring the long awaited title defense of top-ranked Bellator Lightweight Champion Eddie Alvarez (20-3) against relentless challenger Michael Chandler (9-0). With the title fight as the event’s main attraction there was more star power to support the 155lbs. title bout. Bellator Middleweight Champion “Shango” Hector Lombard (29-2) met UFC and Strikeforce veteran Trevor Prangley (23-8) in a non-title catchweight bout of 195lbs. Two of the top five in Women’s MMA went to war in a rematch that had been five years in the making as “JAG” Jessica Aguilar (12-4) and Lisa Ellis-Ward (14-6) faced off in the cage. Starting off the action was former Sengoku featherweight king Marlon Sandro (20-3) and WEC veteran Rafael Dias (15-5) in a 145lbs. match-up with the hopes of the winner earning his way into the next featherweight tournament.
Lightweight Championship Fight
Eddie Alvarez vs. Michael Chandler: Chandler via Submission (Rear Naked Choke), Round 4, 3:06
Catchweight (195lbs.) Feature Fight
Hector Lombard vs. Trevor Prangley: Lombard via KO (Punches), Round 2, 1:06
Women’s Feature Fight
Lisa Ellis vs. Jessica Aguilar: Aguilar via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27), Round 3, 5:00
Featherweight Feature Fight
Marlon Sandro vs. Rafael Dias: Sandro via Submission (Standing Arm-Triangle Choke), Round 1, 3:56
Tonight the Seminole Hard Rock Casino in Hollywood, Florida will host what is perhaps Bellator Fighting Championship’s most impressive card of the season. Reigning Bellator Lightweight Champion Eddie Alvarez (20-2) is coming off a minor injury that sidelined him at Bellator 54 and he is finally meeting Season 4 lightweight tournament winner Michael Chandler (8-0). With the 155lbs. title up for grabs in the marquis event, only a solid main card can shoulder the weight and who better to do so than Bellator Middleweight Champion and powerhouse striker “Shango” Hector Lombard (28-2)? Fresh off his submission victory over “JT Money” Jesse Taylor (14-5) at AFC 2, Lombard meets UFC, Strikeforce, IFL, and Bodog Fight veteran and Shark Fights Light Heavyweight Champion Trevor Prangley (23-7). The non-title fight will be at a catchweight of 195lbs. Lombard’s current win streak of 20 is the longest active streak in the MMA world and the South African fighter will try to end it doing what no man has done, stop the man called “Shango”. Former Sengoku Featherweight Champion and Featherweight tournament finalist “The Monster from Rio” Marlon Sandro (19-3) is returning to the cage after his knockout loss to tournament winner Pat Curran (15-4) and is looking to rebound by taking on WEC veteran submission fighter Rafael Dias (16-8). Women’s MMA will kick off the action as “JAG” Jessica Aguilar (11-4) looks to take revenge against the woman who handed her her first defeat, Lisa Ward (14-5).
The Bellator Season 5 Middleweight Tournament semi-finals went off with a bang in Atlantic City, New Jersey as Bellator 54 anchored ship last night at the Boardwalk Hall. “The Beast” Bryan Baker (13-3) took on Vitor Vianna (12-1) and “The Storm” Alexander Shlemenko (32-4) slugged it out with “The Predator” Brian Rogers (8-3) for a chance to advance to the finals and a shot at Bellator gold. Bellator Bantamweight Champion “Fun Size” Zach Makovsky (14-2) stepped back into the cage for another non-title fight against the powerhouse Ryan Roberts (16-11). The main card featured on MTV2 was started off in the lightweight division with a bout featuring Bellator veteran “The Brazilian Bomber” Rene Nazare (8-1) and the Bellator first-timer “The Hunter” Jacob Kirwan (9-3).
After an injury left Bellator Lightweight Champion Eddie Alvarez (20-2) sitting on the sidelines rather than defending his belt against Michael Chandler (8-0) at Bellator 54, the Chicago-based promotion’s inaugural 155lbs. champ is now ready to spring back into action. Alvarez is slated to take on Chandler in a rescheduled championship bout scheduled for November 19 at Bellator 58.
The undefeated Missouri native Chandler earned his title shot by bullying his way through the Bellator Season 4 Lightweight Tournament in which he claimed victories over Marcin Held (11-1), “Cupcake” Llyod Woodard (11-1), and “Pitbull” Patricky Freire (3-1). Chandler showed excellent wrestling and an unrelenting pace that broke his opponents down as the fight wore on. The champion Alvarez hasn’t seen cage time since his first title defense against Pat Curran (15-4) at Bellator 39 in April. The five-round affair showcased the same signature slick boxing and counter wrestling that have punished and given opponents fits throughout his career.
After recent rumors that Bellator, CFC, and AFC Middleweight Champion “Shango” Hector Lombard (28-2) was set to face former Strikeforce Light Heavyweight Champion and world class MMA veteran “Babalu” Renato Sobral (33-9 were dispelled, the skies have cleared and Lombard’s next opponent has been revealed.
Bellator Fighting Championships announced today that its middleweight champion will return to his home field at the Seminole Hard Rock Casino in Seminole, Florida to face off with Shark Fights Light Heavyweight Champion and UFC, MFC, Bodog Fight, and Strikeforce veteran Trevor Prangley (23-7). The November 19 non-tile affair will go down at a catchweight of 195lbs.
“Psycho” Karl Amoussou (12-3-2) entered the lion’s den of European MMA with three first-round submission wins that earned him the honor of cutting his teeth in the ranks of the world famous M-1 Global promotion. Toting an 8-2 record within the organization, of which only two bouts saw the judges, Amoussou’s explosive style and finishing power established him as a fan favorite and a powerhouse amongst European fighters. In August 2009 the Frenchman made his US debut also under the M-1 banner in the promotion’s first ever live televised event in the United States, M-1 Global: Breakthrough. Despite disposing of his opponent John Doyle (9-16) in impressive fashion via first-round Rear Naked Choke, the Judo black belt Amoussou still went relatively unnoticed in the landscape of US MMA.
Six months later in February 2010, Amoussou entered the Strikeforce cage against South African fighter Trevor Prangley (23-7) in a bout that many believed the more experienced Prangley would dominate. Against Prangley, Amoussou showed that he’s no pushover. He got the better exchanges and was picking Prangley apart until he received an accidental eye poke and consequently was unable to see or continue the fight. The match was ruled a Draw and despite his commanding performance, the memory of all but the outcome faded in many fans’ minds.
Amoussou would not compete again on American soil until May 21 at Bellator 45. The main card feature fight pitted the 25-year-old M-1 veteran and undercover police officer against King of the Cage veteran “Smiling” Sam Alvey (13-2) for a spot in the Bellator Season 5 Middleweight Tournament. After a three-round battle in which “Psycho” arguably dominated at least 10 of the 15 minutes, two out of the bout’s three judges gave the nod to Alvey and sent Amoussou back to France without a spot in Bellator’s upcoming 185lbs. tournament.
MMA Gospel staff writer Cole Moorman recently interviewed the “Psycho” in hopes of turning the American eye to the bright future of Karl Amoussou.
Tomorrow night Lake Charles, Louisiana will have the honor of hosting the final event of the Bellator Fighting Championships Season 4 tournaments. Not only will there be tournament finals taking place in two weight classes, but one of those finals will crown a new champion in the light heavyweight division. Opening up the main card, middleweight Sam Alvey (13-2) meets M-1 veteran “Psycho” Karl Amoussou (12-2). Gritty featherweight Daniel Straus (16-2) will meet the young Brazilian phenom “Pitbull” Patricio Freire (8-1) in a scheduled three-round war to determine the Bellator Season 4 Featherweight Tournament winner as well as who will face the vocal champion Joe Warren (7-1) for his title. Finally, the lightning fast and iron forged giant Richard Hale (12-3) will take on lean and mean French knockout artist Christian M’Pumbu (3-1) with the winner being minted as Bellator’s inaugural 205lbs. champion. Derek Lewis (4-1) was slated to meet Brazilian giant “Big Monster” Thiago Santos (4-1) but an injury has caused Santos to pull out of the fight, thus cancelling the heavyweight tilt. Bellator’s final effort of its fourth season promises fireworks; here, MMA Gospel takes a look at how the evening may play out.
The historic setting of Atlantic City, New Jersey, known for its casinos and night life, will host Bellator 44 tomorrow night with a locked and loaded main card that is perhaps the organization’s best offering to date. Even after the loss of “Cyborg” Lyman Good (11-2) to a hamstring injury last week that caused his fight with “The Handler” Dan Hornbuckle (18-4) to be put on hold, the card remains stacked with fighters known for their exciting styles. Bryan Goldsby (14-9) and Anthony Morrison (14-9) kick off the main card with a bantamweight fight that guarantees the winner the final spot in the Season 5 tournament, proceeded by returning title contender and self-proclaimed “pure striker” Russian-born kickboxer “The Storm” Alexander Shlemenko (29-4) meeting former welterweight Brett Cooper (12-5) who has found new life at a more natural weight of 185lbs. Then, Bellator Season 4 Lightweight Tournament finalist “Pitbull” Patricky Freire (3-0) will meet Mike Chandler Jr. (7-0) for the title of tournament champion and to earn his place as the next man in line for reigning 155lbs. champion Eddie Alvarez’s (21-2) belt. The trio of promising bouts will prime the pump for an explosive main event superfight in the middleweight division pitting UFC, Strikeforce, and SUPERBRAWL veteran “Niko” Falaniko Vitale (27-8) against the dangerous king of the Bellator middleweight division “Shango” Hector Lombard (26-2). Vitale’s slick Jiu-Jitsu may be enough to end one of the longest win streaks in MMA, but he will have to get past Lombard’s aggressive sweet science first or end his night sleeping on the canvas.
San Diego, California gets its latest taste of MMA action when Strikeforce comes rolling in this Saturday night. The main card offers enough action to entertain even the more casual mixed martial arts fans, covering the full gamut with young up-and-comers, seasoned veterans, aspiring champions, and game competitors. Submission specialist Shinya Aoki (19-5) battles the always dangerous Lyle Beerbohm (15-1). Japanese wonder “Crusher” Tatsuya Kawajiri (26-5-2) comes onto US soil with the goal of taking the lightweight title from “El Nino” Gilbert Melendez (18-2). In the main event, “Semtex” Paul Daley (23-10-2) challenges current Strikeforce Welterweight Champion “Diablo” Nick Diaz (23-8) in a five-round battle. Within the chaos going on, former UFC superstar “The Dean of Mean” Keith Jardine (15-9-1) replaces an injured “MAK” Mike Kyle (14-8-1) to take on 205lbs. contender “The Dreamcatcher” Gegard Mousasi (24-3-1). For Mousasi, every win gets him closer to regaining the light heavyweight title. With Jardine on the opposite end of him, Mousasi better tread carefully lest he wants to become a stepping stone to Jardine’s second change at glory.
Strikeforce presented another Showtime sports event with welterweight champion “Diablo” Nick Diaz (23-8) taking on Chute Boxe fighter “Cyborg” Evangelista Santos (17-14) in the main event in one of two title fights this past Saturday night. Before these two took to the cage at the “Shark Tank” of the HP Pavilion Center in San Jose, California, big names such as Roger Gracie (4-0) of the renowned Gracie family came to not only remain undefeated, but to prove his family is still as much of an influence in MMA with not only instructing Jiu-Jitsu but fighting as well. Herschel Walker (2-0) hoped to master another battlefield when he traded out the gridiron for six sides of steel, and elite middleweights “Jacare” Ronaldo Souza (13-2) and “Ruthless” Robbie Lawler (18-7) met for the middleweight championship.
Hola, icemigos. Okay enough with the small talk, let’s get the Strikeforce: Diaz vs. Cyborg card wrap-up… well, wrapped up.
Roger Gracie apparently doesn’t need no steenking sponsors as he may be the first fighter I’ve ever seen with plain black shorts with not so much as the brand name of said shorts visible. Maybe Spinal Tap sponsored his shorts. ‘How much more black can these shorts be? The answer is none… none more black’. Gracie was able to get in the inside, trip Trevor Prangley and turn it into a Jiu-Jitsu match which was bad news for the veteran Prangley. Gracie was able to wrestle his way to full mount and Prangley did a good job of pushing off the cage to try and spin out and stand up but Gracie stayed stuck to him got his back and a body triangle and the inevitable Rear Naked Choke came soon after.
Strikeforce returned to Showtime last night with its “Diaz vs. Cyborg” card, broadcasting live from its headquarters city of San Jose, California at the HP Pavilion for an explosive evening of fights. Up for grabs were both the welterweight and middleweight titles, as well as Roger Gracie of the highly regarded Gracie family (4-0) attempting to stay undefeated in a clash with Muay Thai kickboxer Trevor Prangley (22-7) and crossover superstar Herschel Walker (2-0) taking on Scott Carson (4-2). The crowd was primed and ready to go crazy, and with the event that included exciting finishes and all-out-wars, Strikeforce surely did not disappoint with its latest effort. Here’s how the fights turned out.
—MAIN CARD (on Showtime)—
“Diablo” Nick Diaz vs. “Cyborg” Evangelista Santos: Diaz via Submission (Armbar), Round 2, 4:50*
“Jacare” Ronaldo Souza vs. “Ruthless” Robbie Lawler: Souza via Submission (Rear Naked Choke), Round 3, 2:00**
Herschel Walker vs. Scott Carson: Walker via TKO (Strikes), Round 1, 3:13
Roger Gracie vs. Trevor Prangley: Gracie via Submission (Rear Naked Choke), Round 1, 4:19
—PRELIMS (on Sherdog.com)—
Nate Moore vs. Nathan Coy: Moore via KO (Punches), Round 2, 0:25
Bobby Stack vs. Isaiah Hill: Hill via Submission (Triangle Choke), Round 1, 1:02
Ron Keslar vs. Eric Lawson: Keslar via Submission (Armbar), Round 1, 1:57
Germaine De Randamie vs. Stephanie Webber: De Randamie via Knockout (Knee), Round 1, 4:25
James Terry vs. Lucas Gamaza: Terry via TKO (Strikes), Round 1, 3:26
Jenna Castillo vs. Charlene Gellner: Castillo via TKO (Strikes), Round 2, 3:57
Niko Jackson vs. Ricky Jackson: Ricky Jackson via Unanimous Decision, Round 3, 5:00
Sam Bracamonte vs. Armin Safiari: Safiari via Unanimous Decision, Round 3, 5:00
* “Diablo” Nate Diaz retains the Strikeforce Welterweight Championship belt
** “Jacare” Ronaldo Souza retains the Strikeforce Middleweight Championship belt