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Bellator 153 Main Card Results: 3 Submissions, 2 Possibly Injured

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It was a sell-out crowd at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut Friday night for Bellator 153 and the fans were not disappointed. The Main card bolstered 5 fights, three of which ended via submission. Even though Connecticut is a relatively small state, it has been a hotbed for combat sports in recent years. Bellator 153 was no exception as the Constitution State continued to draw huge crowds and be a destination for some of the biggest shows outside of Las Vegas in muay thai, boxing and MMA. This was Bellator’s eleventh show in the city of Uncasville.

In the first fight highly touted homegrown Bellator prospect Michael “Venom” Page (10-0) face off against his toughest opponent to date in Jeremie “Hit Em” Holloway. Hollway promised to bring the fight to his more well-known opponent and did just that at the start of the opening stanza. “Hit Em” rushed MVP at the sound of the bell and was not rewarded for his effort as he was immediately hit with a hard straight right that put him on his back. To his credit he quickly got back to his feet but was caught a right hook as he was coming up, followed by another thudding straight right as soon as he attempted to engage again. For the next minute or so Page did some dancing and a few “Ali” shuffles without much action. Later, Holloway was able to pin Page to the cage with under hooks but could not land any significant offense in the clinch except for a knee to groin which caused referee “Big” Jon McCarthy to halt the contest for a short period. When the fight resumes Holloway takes another straight right from Page that noticeable hurt him and left him on wobbly legs. MVP throw his opponent to the mat and locks in an unorthodox Achilles lock with Holloway on his back. Holloway attempted to push Page off of him with a couple of feet to the face, one of which was a borderline up kick. When his opponent taps and McCarthy stepped in to stop the contest, MVP appeared to hold onto the submission for a couple seconds too long while taunting his now possibly injured his adversary. To make a bad situation worse he gets up and walks around to Holloway’s face to taunt him again in what can only be described as nothing less than classless and unsportsmanlike. The taunts and the decision to hold on to the ankle longer than necessary overshadowed a masterful performance from Page. Holloway was unable to stand as the Page was announced the winner. In the post-fight interview, the obvious infraction is not mentioned.

In the second bout, we witnessed a controversial split decision victory for Brent Primus (7-0) over Gleristone “Toninho” Santos (27-6). Throughout the fight is was Santos landing the cleaner shots while countering the undefeated American with better technical combinations, while also winning the grappling battle as several times he refused to allow Primus to work from the clinch and used superior foot movement to avoid takedown attempts for the majority of the fight. The takes down that Primus did successfully execute in the first two rounds were short lived as “Toninho” would almost immediately get back to his feet. Santos also scored with a few leg kicks, one of which in the second round was deemed a foul, although Santos thought it to be a legal blow. The third round was more closely contest as Primus backed Santos up for much of it but was clearly still not controlling the pace or where the action took place. Primus did a little damage following a takedown in the closing minute of the round which evidently stole the round in the eyes of the judges. Unofficial ringside scorer and announcer Jimmy Smith scored the fight 30-27 for Santos.

The third fight on the main card was the shortest of the night. In just 30 seconds, Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos (21-16) went into hostile territory to not only record a huge upset win against the always entertaining “Irish” Brennan Ward but also to injure him the process. Ward, a native of Connecticut, had never been defeated at 170 lbs and Santos, who was making his Bellator debut, actually came in 1.75 lbs under the welterweight limit. During the first exchange, Cyborg threw a right kick which Ward caught. Ward then threw a couple straight rights that didn’t land cleanly before securing a body lock in an attempt to wrestle Santos down and take his back. Santos, a Brazilian jujitsu black belt out of the Chute Boxe Academy then rolled forward and secured a nasty heel hook that eventually submitted his opponent. Not wanting to tap in front of his friends and family, Ward held out for as long as he could until his heel appeared to pop causing him to scream in pain while he tapped out. After a brief celebration, Santos went to check on Ward who had yet to get up from the canvas. Ward was unable to stand at the time the winner was announced. This is the second submission by some type of ankle lock of the night, both of which appeared to result in injury to the fighters. In the post fight interview Santos, who now trains out of Houston, Texas, said that he is here for the title.

In the co-main event former featherweight champion Patricio “Pit Bull” Freire (25-3) in his first fight since losing the title to Daniel Straus last November, got a second round submission win over former King of the Cage Champion Henry “OK” Corrales (12-3). After a feeling out period for almost half of the round “Pit Bull” drives Corrales to the cage and takes him down with little resistance and moves into full mount. After arm triangle attempts fails on Corrales’ left side Freire beautifully moves back to mount. When Corrales slips his left leg out to get into half guard, Freire then attempts the same submission on Corrales’ right side. Freire is unable to lock in the submission because he is in between his opponent and the cage, and they soon scramble back to their feet without much action coming in the last minute as the round comes to a close. The second round starts the same as the end of the first with both men being very cautious and not looking to fully engaging. Towards the end of the round Corrales steps inside and lands a couple left hooks causing Freire change levels and take him down. Corrales kicks his opponent off of him and as he scrambles to his feet he is caught snatched up by an arm-in guillotine choke. The Brazilian leaps on him, eventually pulling him down into his guard. Now the choke is incredibly deep and Corrales is forced to tap rather quickly after they hit the ground.

The next Bellator event is scheduled for May 14th at the SAP Center in San Jose, California and is expected to be headlined by Phil Davis versus Muhammad “King Mo” Lawal.

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Watch: Bellator 185 Prelims

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Gegard Mousasi takes on Alexander Slemenko live this Friday night October 20th at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville CT. This is the first appearance for Mousasi in the Bellator cage as he looks to secure a title shot with a win over the very tough former Bellator champion Slemenko. Joining these men of the main card will be a pair of welterweights as Neiman Gracie from the famous Gracie BJJ family takes on Zak Bucia in the co-main event.

Complete Bellator 185: Mousasi vs. Shlemenko Fight Card:

Middleweight Main Event: Gegard Mousasi (42-6-2) vs. Alexander Shlemenko (56-9, 1 NC)

Welterweight Feature Bout: Neiman Gracie (6-0) vs. Zak Bucia (18-8)

Women’s Flyweight Feature Bout: Heather Hardy (1-0) vs. Kristina Williams (Debut)

Lightweight Feature Bout: Ryan Quinn (13-7) vs. Marcus Surin (4-0)

Women’s Flyweight Feature Bout: Ana Julaton (2-2) vs. Lisa Blaine (1-0)

Preliminary Card:

Catchweight Preliminary Bout: Jordan Young (6-0) vs. Alec Hooben (5-3)

Middleweight Preliminary Bout: Costello van Steenis (8-1) vs. Steve Skrzat (8-9)

Welterweight Preliminary Bout: Vinicius de Jesus (5-1) vs. Joaquin Buckley (7-1)

Lightweight Preliminary Bout: John Beneduce (2-1) vs. Dean Hancock (2-1)

Featherweight Preliminary Bout: Timothy Wheeler (1-4) vs. Pete Rogers (2-4)

150 lb. Catchweight Preliminary Bout: Don Shainis (3-1) vs. Matthew Denning (5-6)

150 lb. Catchweight Preliminary Bout: Frank Sforza (6-0) vs. Vovka Clay (3-2)

Lightweight Preliminary Bout: Kevin Carrier (Pro Debut) vs. Jose Antonio Perez (Pro Debut)

Flyweight Preliminary Bout: John Lopez

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*Watch* Bellator 185 Weigh in: Live Stream, Results

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Watch the live weigh-ins for Bellator 185 here.

Gegard Mousasi takes on Alexander Slemenko live this Friday night October 20th at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville CT. This is the first appearance for Mousasi in the Bellator cage as he looks to secure a title shot with a win over the very tough former Bellator champion Slemenko. Joining these men of the main card will be a pair of welterweights as Neiman Gracie from the famous Gracie BJJ family takes on Zak Bucia in the co-main event.

Full Weigh-in Results: (Updated in real time)

Main Card:

Gegard Mousasi (185) vs. Alexander Shlemenko (186)
Neiman Gracie (170.5) vs. Zak Bucia (170)
Heather Hardy (126) vs. Kristina Williams (126)
Ryan Quinn (155.5) vs. Marcus Surin (155)
Ana Julaton (125.5) vs. Lisa Blaine (122)

Preliminary Card:

Jordan Young (200) vs. Alec Hooben (194)
Costello van Steenis (185) vs. Steve Skrzat (186)
Vinicius de Jesus (170) vs. Joaquin Buckley (171)
John Beneduce (154.5) vs. Dean Hancock (155)
Timothy Wheeler (144) vs. Pete Rogers (144)
Don Shainis (150) vs. Matthew Denning (149)
Frank Sforza (149) vs. Vovka Clay (150)
Kevin Carrier (156) vs. Jose Antonio Perez (153)
John Lopez (126) vs. Billy Giovanella (125)

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Bellator 185 Fight to Watch: Heather Hardy vs. Kristina Williams

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Heather Hardy will compete in MMA for the second time at Bellator 185 on Friday night, as she faces Kristina Williams in a strawweight contest. The fight takes place on the main card at the Mohican Sun Arena in Connecticut.

Potentially, what Bellator have in Heather ‘The Heat’ Hardy is a major draw that they can build their 125 pound division around. While relatively new to the organisation she is fast becoming one of the more popular names on the roster. Her career is in the early stages, but many have already started to draw comparisons with former boxer turned MMA star, Holly Holm. Holm’s UFC success partly inspired the native New Yorker to make the switch from boxing.

Hardy is already an established world champion in the land of the ‘sweet science’, holding a 21 fight undefeated professional record. She made her MMA debut in June this year with a victory over Alice Yauger, at Bellator 180. At 35, Hardy is a late starter in the sport, but proved at Madison Square Garden against the credible Yauger that she has a bright future.

Hardy’s first outing in the cage was disciplined and composed. Despite a slow start in round one, Hardy grew in confidence as the fight progressed and her cardio never faltered. She mixed in plenty of kicks that complimented her boxing and looked at ease in the clinch, even defending a couple of takedown attempts in the process.

Despite looking on course for a decision win, Hardy forced the TKO stoppage with just thirteen seconds remaining in round three. Even a large cut that required seven stitches from an accidental head clash could not deny her victory.

Hardy was fighting an experienced professional, competing for the tenth time in MMA, which makes the win over Yauger more impressive. However, her upcoming opponent Kristina Williams will be making her professional debut.

There is little known about Williams except that she is 3-0 at amateur level. One of those wins came by way of submission so there may well be a threat to Hardy if the fight goes to the ground. More importantly for Williams is how she copes on the big stage against a popular opponent, who is more familiar competing in high pressure combat situations. If Williams can produce an upset it will be a huge boost in her young career.

But in all honesty, this fight is about Hardy. It’s about getting the win and gaining valuable experience. The boxing career is on hold while MMA takes centre stage. Beating Williams will mean she likely continues fighting inside a cage rather than a boxing ring.

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