Tag Archives: A.J. McKee

FORMER CHAMP ANDREY KORESHKOV TAKES ON CHIDI NJOKUANI DURING BELLATOR 182 MAIN EVENT AT TURNING STONE RESORT CASINO IN UPSTATE NEW YORK ON AUGUST 25

ALSO, CONNECTICUT’S BRENNAN WARD RETURNS AGAINST FERNANDO GONZALEZ IN EXPLOSIVE MATCHUP

LOS ANGELES — Following Bellator NYC at Madison Square Garden, Bellator MMA returns to the Empire State to make its Upstate New York debut set to invade Turning Stone ResortCasino in Verona, N.Y. with a welterweight main event pitting former Bellator champ Andrey Koreshkov (19-2) against Chidi Njokuani (17-4, 1 NC) on Friday, August 25for Bellator 182.

In addition, a second welterweight bout will serve as the evening’s co-main showdown when Brennan Ward (14-5) meets Fernando Gonzalez (26-14) in a bout sure to produce fireworks, while featherweight A.J. McKee returns to the cage fresh off an ESPN “SportsCenter” Top-Ten finish of Dominic Mazzotta in his last outing.

Bellator 182: Koreshkov vs. Njokuani will be broadcast live and free on SPIKE at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT, while preliminary action will stream on Bellator.com and the Bellator Mobile App. Tickets for Bellator 182 go on sale Friday, June 2 at 10:00 a.m. ET for $85, $65, $47 and $37 and can be purchased in person at the Turning Stone Box Office, by calling 877.833.SHOW, or online at Ticketmaster.com.

Additional main and preliminary card bouts will be announced in the coming weeks.

The 26-year-old Russian phenom Koreshkov has been ascendant since his very first professional fight, claiming 19 career victories over 21 bouts, including wins in each of his first 13 contests. Fighting out of Omsk, Russia, “Spartan” will be making his 13th career appearance under the Bellator MMA banner and his first of 2017. Under the direction of Bellator MMA, Koreshkov has accrued a total of 10 victories over a four-year run, highlighted by a welterweight world title triumph over current champion Douglas Lima and a successful title defense over Benson Henderson at Bellator 153. Since making his professional debut in 2010, Koreshkov has collected 13 finishes, including 10 knockouts, eight of which came in the first round, making him one of the most dangerous 170-pounders in the game.

Fighting out of Las Vegas, Nev., Njokuani enters the cage riding momentum of an impressive streak that has seen him win eight consecutive bouts and 12 of his last 13. Since joining the Bellator MMA fray in 2015, the 28-year-old Njokuani has collected four victories, including a pair of knockout finishes. Most recently, “Chidi Bang Bang” defeated Melvin Guillard at Bellator 171 in January, adding to his current run of success.

The 28-year-old Ward enters the contest as one of the most feared fighters in Bellator MMA’s stacked 170-pound class. With 13 finishes over his 14 career victories, including nine knockouts, “Irish” possesses the perfect combination of pure strength and fearlessness. A 14-fight veteran of Bellator MMA, the Waterford, Conn. native will look to earn his 10th win under the direction of the Scott Coker-led promotion. Since joining Bellator MMA in 2012, Ward has yet to see a bout enter the third frame and has finished six of his nine opponents in the opening round. Fans can expect to see fireworks when Ward is inside the Bellator cage on August 25.

Hailing from Menifee, Calif., the 33-year-old Gonzalez will enter the Bellator cage for the eighth time in his 14-year professional career. Gonzalez has seen a great deal of success since joining forces with Bellator MMA; collecting six victories over a seven-fight, three-year span, highlighted by a first round knockout of Karo Parisyan.Gonzalez has come on strong as of late, tallying nine wins over his last 12 bouts, including a pair of first round knockouts and a five-fight winning streak from 2014-16. With 16 of his 26 career victories coming by way of knockout or submission, the 40-fight veteran will look to add to that total as he prepares to go toe-to-toe with one of the most unshakable talents the welterweight division has to offer.

The son of respected MMA veteran Antonio McKee, A.J. McKee spent his entire childhood in the gym soaking up every bit of knowledge and experience available to him. The 22-year-old prodigy has applied that knowledge inside the Bellator cage and has made quite a splash in his first eight fights as an MMA professional, racking up six finishes in eight outings. The Long Beach, Calif. native heads to the East Coast looking to stay undefeated with another impressive finish.

Nationally-recognized for hosting legendary, fight-of-the-year-level boxing events, rivaling venues in major cities such as Las Vegas, Miami and New York City, Turning Stone was one of the first venues in New York to host professional MMA after it was legalized by the State last year, further distinguishing it as the premier destination for live combat sports. The August 25 Bellator MMA event will mark Turning Stone’s third professional MMA event in less than a year.

Updated Bellator 182: Koreshkov vs. NjokuaniMain Card:

Welterweight Main Event: Andrey Koreshkov (19-2) vs. Chidi Njokuani (17-4, 1 NC)

Welterweight Co-Main Event: Brennan Ward (14-5) vs. Fernando Gonzalez (26-14)

Featherweight Feature Bout: A.J. McKee (8-0) vs. TBD

 

Bellator 178 Recap, Results and Fighter Quotes

MAIN CARD BOUTS:

Patricio ‘Pitbull’ (26-4) defeated Daniel Straus (24-7) at :37 of round two to capture the Bellator MMA Featherweight World Title.
 
Quote from Patricio Pitbull:
 
“It’s a dream come true to win back this title and this belt is for my son. It’s a gift for him,” Pitbull said. “I want him to be proud of his Dad and know that I overcame a lot to bring this title back home to Brazil.”
 
Ilima-Lei Macfarlane (6-0) defeated Jessica Middleton (2-1) via submission (arm bar) at 2:15 of round one
 
Quote from Ilima-Lei Macfarlane:
 

“I went in there and did everything that I wanted to do. I did everything that I needed to do and as I said in the cage, I really wanted to make a statement that this is my division,” Macfarlane said. “If they’re going to crown a champion, I want to be number one up there.”

Photos: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/dj72akdy8jofbuo/AAA9qJSRDe8Y8do_Fz3q57VLa?dl=0

Saad Awad (20-9) defeated Ryan Quinn (13-7-1) via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
 
Quote from Saad Awad:
 

“It was a really tough fight and I knew he was a great wrestler. I saw a lot of that coming, he was in my face the whole time,” Awad said. “I thought i could take him out in that first round but he kept coming back. It was a tough fight, glad i came out on top.”

 

 

PRELIMINARY BOUTS:

Tyrell Fortune (3-0) defeated Branko Busick (0-1) via unanimous decision (29-27, 29-27, 29-27)
 
Quote from Tyrell Fortune:
 

“I thought it was great for me to go out and get three rounds in,” Fortune said following his Bellator 178 win. “I felt like I utilized my jab and my knees really well. Obviously I m still pretty too, no bumps and no cuts. I dominated the fight.”

 
Ed Ruth (3-0) defeated David Mundell (6-3) via technical knockout at 3:13 of round 2
 
Quote from Ed Ruth:
 

“I thought it was a good fight and a solid win for me. There were definitely some areas where I could’ve been faster and I could’ve been sharper,” Ruth said after moving to 3-0 in Bellator. “I felt like I missed a lot of openings, but I’ll go back to work and train some more and be ready to go again soon.”

 
Jordan Young (7-0) defeated Tim Caron (7-1) via submission (Brabo Choke) at 3:55 of round one
 
Quote from Jordan Young:
 

“That was light work, easy money. I respect him, but I am here to eat. I need somebody to call me tomorrow, next week, whenever, but I have to eat man,” Young said after remaining undefeated. “I go hard 24/7, so somebody call me because I always stay ready.”

Kas Xhema (1-0) defeated Nick Alley (1-1) via knockout at 3:19 of round one

Quote from Kas Xhema:

“The fight was great. I have the best team and the best coaches, I am very lucky guy,” Xhema said. “Over here at American Top Team Connecticut, I truly feel like we are the best team around.”

Additional Results:

Blair Tugman (10-6) defeated Tom English (6-8) via submission (rear-naked choke) at 4:54 of round three

Chris Foster (11-5) defeated Shane Manley (3-3) via split decision (29-28, 29-28, 28-29)

Billy Giovanetta (9-5) defeated Joshua Ricci (3-0) 

 

FEATHERWEIGHT WORLD TITLE ON THE LINE WHEN DANIEL STRAUS MEETS PATRICIO PITBULL FOR THE FOURTH TIME TOMORROW NIGHT ON SPIKE

Complete Weigh-In Photos Here

UNCASVILLE, CONN. (April 20, 2017) –The official weigh-ins for Bellator 178: Straus vs. Pitbull 4 took place this afternoon at the Mohegan Sun Arena. The competitors are now ready for action tomorrow, with the event airing LIVE and FREE on SPIKE at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT. See below for official weights and photos from tomorrow’s event.

Main Card: (Live on SPIKE – 9 p.m. ET/8:00 p.m. CT)

Featherweight World Title Main Event: Daniel Straus (145) vs. Patricio “Pitbull” Freire (144)

Women’s Flyweight Co-Main Event:Ilima-Lei Macfarlane (126) vs. Jessica Middleton (126)

Catchweight Feature Bout: Saad Awad (164.5) vs. Ryan Quinn (164.5)

Featherweight Feature Bout: A.J. McKee (146) vs. Dominic Mazzotta (146)

Preliminary Card: (Bellator.com – 7:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. CT)

 

Welterweight Preliminary Bout:Ed Ruth (185.5) vs. David Mundell (184.25)

Heavyweight Preliminary Bout: Tyrell Fortune (244.5) vs. Branko Busick (220)

Catchweight Preliminary Bout: Tim Caron (195)  vs. Jordan Young (195)

Welterweight Preliminary Bout:Nick Alley (167) vs. Kastroit Xhema (165)

Featherweight Preliminary Bout:Don Shainis (149.5) vs. Max Kelleher (149.75)

Bantamweight Preliminary Bout:Regivaldo Carvalho (139.5) vs. Jason Perrin (140)

Welterweight Preliminary Bout:Kemran Lachinov (164.5) vs. Sam Watford (164)

Flyweight Preliminary Bout:John Lopez (125.5) vs. Remo Cardarelli (124)

Featherweight Preliminary Bout:Chris Foster (145) vs. Shane Manley (146)

Featherweight Preliminary Bout:Thomas English (146) vs. Blair Tugman (146)

Flyweight Preliminary Bout: Billy Giovanella (124.75) vs. Joshua Ricci (126)

BLUE CHIP PROSPECTS JAROD TRICE & TYRELL FORTUNE RETURN TO BELLATOR MMA CAGE AT BELLATOR 171 INSIDE KANSAS STAR ARENA ON JAN. 27

BRAZILIAN PHENOM BRUNA ELLEN ALSO ADDED TO STACKED UNDERCARD

HOLLYWOOD, CALIF. — (Jan. 13, 2017) – A pair of heavyweight fights featuring undefeated blue chip prospects Jarod Trice(1-0) and Tyrell Fortune (1-0) have been added to the Bellator.com-streamed preliminary card of Bellator 171 at the Kansas Star Arena on Jan. 27.

Also added to the preliminary portion of Bellator 171 is Bruna Ellen (2-1), who will take on Carmella James (Debut) in a female flyweight clash. The new additions join a competitive undercard that is highlighted by a middleweight fight pitting the undefeated Chris Harris (7-0) against Jordan Young (5-0), along with  Gaston Reyno (6-1, 2 NC) versus Justin Overton (3-2).

A catchweight bout putting Melvin Guillard (32-16-2, 3 NC) against knockout artist Chidi Njokuani (16-4, 1 NC) will serve as the evening’s main event, while fans will have the opportunity to see the return of “The King of Kansas” David Rickels (17-4, 2 NC) in a lightweight co-main event fight with Aaron Derrow (14-8). Undefeated phenom A.J. McKee (6-0) will take on Brandon Phillips (6-2) in a featherweight feature fight and Kansas’ own Jessica Middleton (1-0) challenges Alice Yauger (4-4) in a female flyweight bout on the SPIKE-televised main card.

Tickets for Bellator 171: Guillard vs. Njokuani start at $24 and are on sale now atKansasStarEventCenter.com, as well as Ticketmaster.com. The event will be broadcast live and free on SPIKE at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT, while preliminary action will stream on Bellator.com and the Bellator Mobile App.

A highly touted wrestling prospect out of Detroit, Michigan, Jarod Trice will make his second appearance inside of the Bellator MMA cage and is looking to build off of an impressive professional debut. The 27-year-old standout was awarded three All-American honors, as well as a National Title at 120 kg and two Greco Roman National Titles, prior to joining the Bellator MMA fray in 2016. Now Trice is looking to make a name for himself in the world of MMA, after delivering an exceptional performance in his first career win over Tommie Britton at Bellator 167 just over one month ago. Kansas’ Kevin Woltkamp (1-2) will challenge Trice, and will look to play the role hometown spoiler when he competes in front of thousands of friends and family.

After earning state championships in nearly every national age-group in both freestyle and Greco-Roman wrestling during high school, Fortune went on to compete at Grand Canyon University’s highly acclaimed program, where he was named the 2013 Division II Wrestler of the Year, taking home a NCAA Division II championship in the process. The Portland, Ore. native began his career under the direction of Bellator MMA last year, earning a sensational first round knockout victory in his debut at Bellator 163. The 26-year-old now hopes to preserve his unblemished record when he enters the cage for the second time against Will Johnson, who will be making his professional debut.

Hailing from Sao Paulo, Brazil, Ellen enters the bout looking to build off the momentum she came into Bellator with after signing with the Viacom-owned promotion last year. The flyweight prospect began her professional career with back-to-back victories in 2015, including one victory coming after a brilliant knockout win in the opening round of action. Now, the 20-year-old Brazilian makes her second appearance under the Scott Coker-led promotion in the same venue where she made her debut.

Complete Bellator 171: Guillard vs. Njokuani Main Card:

175 lb. Catchweight Main Event: Melvin Guillard (32-16-2, 3 NC) vs. Chidi Njokuani (16-4, 1 NC)

Lightweight Feature Fight: Dave Rickels (17-4, 2 NC) vs. Aaron Derrow (14-8)

Featherweight Feature Fight: A.J. McKee (6-0) vs. Brandon Phillips (6-2)

Flyweight Feature Fight: Jessica Middleton (1-0) vs. Alice Yauger (4-4)

Preliminary Card:

Middleweight Preliminary Bout: Chris Harris (7-0) vs. Jordan Young (5-0)

Featherweight Preliminary Bout: Gaston Reyno (6-1, 2 NC) vs. Justin Overton (3-2)

Weltereweight Preliminary Bout: Will Lavine (Debut) vs. Domo Garcia (Debut)

Welterweight Preliminary Bout: Chance Rencountre (8-2) vs. Jake Lindsay (11-5)

Bantamweight Preliminary Bout: Johnny Marigo (2-0) vs. Joe Fulk (4-4)

Welterweight Preliminary Bout: Manny Meraz (8-3) vs. Scott Heston (4-1)

Lightweight Preliminary Bout: Craig Farley (Debut) vs. Mike Breeden (Debut)

Heavyweight Preliminary Bout: Jarod Trice (1-0) vs. Kevin Woltkamp (1-2)

Heavyweight Preliminary Bout: Tyrell Fortune (1-0) vs. Will Johnson (Debut)

Flyweight Preliminary Bout: Bruna Ellen (2-1) vs. Carmella James (Debut)

RISING STAR A.J. MCKEE RETURNS TO ACTION WITH FEATHERWEIGHT BOUT AGAINST BRANDON PHILLIPS AT BELLATOR 171 INSIDE KANSAS STAR ARENA ON JAN. 27

 

KANSAS’ OWN JESSICA MIDDLETON MAKES SPIKE DEBUT DURING FLYWEIGHT BOUT AGAINST ALICE YAUGER

GASTON REYNO ADDED TO STACKED PRELIMINARY CARD

HOLLYWOOD, CALIF. —  (Jan. 12, 2017) – A featherweight feature fight pitting A.J. McKee (6-0) against Brandon Phillips (6-2) has been added to the SPIKE-televised main card of Bellator 171 at the Kansas Star Arena on Jan. 27.

In addition, Kansas’ own Jessica Middleton (1-0) will take on Alice Yauger (4-4) in a female flyweight clash, while Uruguayan knockout artist Gaston Reyno (6-1, 2 NC) highlights a stacked preliminary card when he meets Justin Overton (3-2).

The evening’s main event features a 175-pound catchweight showdown between MMA veteran Melvin Guillard (32-16-2, 3 NC) and knockout specialist Chidi Njokuani (16-4, 1 NC). “The King of Kansas” David Rickels (17-4, 2 NC) also returns to the Bellator cage, as he will take on Aaron Derrow (14-8) in a lightweight feature fight.

Tickets for Bellator 171: Guillard vs. Njokuani start at $24 and are on sale now at KansasStarEventCenter.com, as well as Ticketmaster.com. Additional main and preliminary card bouts will be announced in the coming weeks.The event will be broadcast live and free on SPIKE at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT, while preliminary action will stream on Bellator.com and the Bellator Mobile App.

McKee enters the Bellator MMA cage undefeated and continues to prove that he is one of the top young prospects in the sport of MMA. With each of McKee’s six professional fights coming under the direction of Bellator MMA, the 21-year-old Team BodyShop product has made a name for himself from day one, showing both exceptional power and elusiveness every time he steps into the cage. After finishing each of his first five opponents with opening round victories, “Mercenary” was finally taken the distance in his most recent bout with Ray Wood, earning a hard-fought unanimous decision win atBellator 166. A native of Long Beach, Calif., McKee will return to the Midwest in search of his first win of 2017.

Taking his ninth professional fight, 27-year-old Brandon Phillips will participate in the main card action for the first time in his Bellator MMA career. Phillips began his professional career with a bang, delivering five consecutive victories, with four knockouts, and earning well-deserved attention from the Scott Coker-led promotion. Phillips made his Bellator MMA debut in 2016, collecting a unanimous decision victory over Chuka Willis at Bellator 159. After recording finishes in five of six career wins, the Oklahoma City native will make the short trip up North to Kansas Star Arena, where he will have the opportunity to add to that impressive total.

Fighting out of Wichita, Kansas, 28-year-old Jessica Middleton will look to add to her impressive professional debut, a clutch victory over Bruna Ellen at last year’s Bellator 159 when she competes on Jan. 27. Following an undefeated amateur career, the hometown favorite now hopes to preserve her unblemished professional mark in a flyweight fight with Alice Yauger. An eight-fight veteran of MMA, Yauger enters the bout having won each of her last two contests and three of her past four. Hailing from Arlington, Texas, the 38-year-old Yauger hopes to use her experience advantage when she makes her promotional debut against the younger Middleton.

Making his fourth appearance under the Bellator MMA banner, Reyno enters the bout in search of his third win under the promotion and second in a row. A native of Montevideo, Uruguay, Reyno has delivered finishes in each of his six career victories, including five straight first round stoppages to begin his professional career. “Tonga” will now direct his attention to Kansas Star Arena and Jan. 27, where he will look to build off of an impressive knockout win over L.J. Hermreck at Bellator 159.

Updated Bellator 171: Guillard vs. Njokuani Main Card:

175 lb. Catchweight Main Event: Melvin Guillard (32-16-2, 3 NC) vs. Chidi Njokuani (16-4, 1 NC)

Lightweight Feature Fight: Dave Rickels (17-4, 2 NC) vs. Aaron Derrow (14-8)

Featherweight Feature Fight: A.J. McKee (6-0) vs. Brandon Phillips (6-2)

Flyweight Feature Fight: Jessica Middleton (1-0) vs. Alice Yauger (4-4)

Updated Preliminary Card:

Middleweight Preliminary Bout: Chris Harris (7-0) vs. Jordan Young (5-0)

Featherweight Preliminary Bout: Gaston Reyno (6-1, 2 NC) vs. Justin Overton (3-2)

Weltereweight Preliminary Bout: Will Lavine (Debut) vs. Domo Garcia (Debut)

Welterweight Preliminary Bout: Chance Rencountre (8-2) vs. Jake Lindsay (11-5)

Bantamweight Preliminary Bout: Johnny Marigo (2-0) vs. Joe Fulk (4-4)

Welterweight Preliminary Bout: Manny Meraz (8-3) vs. Scott Heston (4-1)

Lightweight Preliminary Bout: Craig Farley (Debut) vs. Mike Breeden (Debut)

EDUARDO DANTAS NULLIFIES WRESTLING OF JOE WARREN, RETAINS BANTAMWEIGHT TITLE IN ‘BELLATOR 166’ REMATCH

Complete Event Photos Here

THACKERVILLE, OK. (Dec. 2, 2016) — Despite receiving a point-deduction for a low kick in the fifth and final round, Eduardo Dantas (19-4) was impeccable on the feet during his rematch with Joe Warren (14-6) at “Bellator 166” on Friday, peppering Warren with jabs for 25-minutes and earning a majority decision (47-47, 49-44, 48-46) in front of a packed house at WinStar Resort and Casino.

With the loss, Warren’s bid for a third Bellator MMA title reign ended, as he was unable to secure a takedown throughout the main event bout. “The World’s Baddest Man” had never lost a fight that went to the judges’ scorecards until Friday, while “Dudu” rectified the defeat he took against Warren at “Bellator 128.” 

After the fight, Dantas dedicated his victory to the families of those affected by the deadly plane crash suffered by the Chapecoense Soccer Team in Brazil last week. The victory now sets the stage for tomorrow night’s “Bellator 167” event, which pits Joe Taimanglo against Darrion Caldwell.

McKee Overcomes Adversity, Remains Undefeated with Impressive Ground-and-Pound Victory

In the evening’s featherweight co-main event, A.J. McKee (6-0) came from behind to defeat Ray Wood (7-3) with a unanimous decision triumph (29-27, 30-25, 30-27). McKee was tested early in the opening round, as Wood landed multiple blows that sent McKee flying to the canvas. However, McKee was able to stay the course and answered the bell, convincingly dominating Wood during the final two frames. Wood becomes just the first of McKee’s six victims to make it out of the first round, forcing the 21-year-old “Mercenary” into his first-ever decision. Fighting out of Long Beach, Calif., McKee proclaimed his desire to compete on the upcoming “Bellator 170: Ortiz vs. Sonnen” super-card after the win, calling out his previously scheduled opponentEmmanuel Sanchez.

Galvao Edges Davis for Split Decision win in Bantamweight Thriller

 

In a night highlighted by a pair of phenomenal bantamweight matchups, Marcos Galvao (18-7-1) was able to squeak out a tightly fought contest with L.C. Davis (23-8), emerging victorious with a split decision win (29-28 x2, 28-29). A 12-fight veteran of Bellator MMA, Galvao earned his eighth victory under the promotion’s direction and first of his 2016 campaign. “Loro” seems to be finding his groove, tallying victories in five of his past six contests. For Davis, the loss is just his second since joining the Scott Coker-led promotion in 2014.

Chris Honeycutt Delivers Flawless Performance – Rewarded With Unanimous Decision Victory

 

In the opening bout of “Bellator 166, Chris Honeycutt (9-1, 1 NC) brought a rowdy Thackerville crowd to their feet throughout the course of a one-sided middleweight affair, defeating Ben Reiter (17-2-1) via unanimous decision (30-26, 30-25 x2). An early knee, coupled with a ruthless combination of blows opened a sizeable gash on the side of Reiter’s head, forcing the 29-year-old New Yorker to take some chances. The win is Honeycutt’s second consecutive victory at 185-pounds, opening the door in what is currently a wide open division. For Reiter, the loss is just the second of his career, the first of which also came at WinStar Resort and Casino.

Preliminary Card Results:

Gregory Babene (18-11) defeated Emiliano Sordi (14-6) via submission (Guillotine Choke) at 3:11 of round one

Treston Thomison (10-4) defeated Dawond Pickney (10-6) via submission (Arm-bar) at :51 of round one

Derrick Adkins (9-3) defeated Chris Jones (10-5) via submission (Brabo Choke) at 4:09 of round two

Kinny Spotwood (3-2) defeated John King (4-4) via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)

LIGHTWEIGHT REMATCH PITTING PATRICKY PITBULL AGAINST DEREK CAMPOS SERVES AS MAIN EVENT AT SECOND NIGHT OF BELLATOR DOUBLEHEADER INSIDE WINSTAR WORLD CASINO & RESORT

 

 

JOHN TEIXEIRA GETS NEW OPPONENT JUSTIN LAWRENCE WHILE TOP WRESTLING PROSPECT JAROD TRICE MAKES HIS DEBUT AGAINST BRANDON LEE ON STACKED PRELIMINARY CARD

 

 

SANTA MONICA, CALIF. (November 1, 2016) – An undisclosed injury to Pat Curran, who was originally scheduled to fight John Teixeira(20-1-2), has opened the door for a lightweight main event pitting Patricky Pitbull (16-8) against Derek Campos (17-6) on the second night of a special doubleheader inside WinStar World Casino & Resort in Thackerville, OK., on Saturday, December 3.

 

In lieu of the injured former featherweight champion, Teixeira will now face Justin Lawrence (9-3) in main card action. In addition, Bellator MMA is pleased to announce the professional debut of three-time All American wrestling prospect Jarod Trice, who will challenge Brandon Lee (4-1) during the Bellator.com-streamed preliminary card.

 

The second night of entertainment – “Bellator 167” – features a flyweight bout pitting undefeated budding superstar Ilima-Lei MacFarlane (4-0) against Emily Ducote (4-1), as well as Chidi Njokuani (15-4, 1 NC) versus Andre Fialho (7-0) in three rounds of welterweight action on the Spike-televised main card.

 

A bantamweight world title rematch pitting current champion Eduardo Dantas (18-4) against Joe Warren (14-5) and a featherweight bout pitting undefeated prospect A.J. McKee (5-0) against Emmanuel Sanchez (13-3) will highlight the first night of excitement at “Bellator 166.”Lastly, a bantamweight bout between Marcos Galvao (17-7-1) and L.C. Davis (23-7) will also be featured on the main card of the doubleheader’s opening night.

 

Tickets for the unique doubleheader event start at just $45 and can be purchased at the WinStar World Casino & Resort Box Office, as well as Ticketmaster and Bellator.com.

 

“Bellator 167: Pitbull vs. Campos 2” airs live and free on Saturday on SPIKE at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT., while “Bellator 166: Dantas vs. Warren 2”airs live and free on Friday on SPIKE at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT. Preliminary bouts for both events will stream live on Bellator.com and The Bellator Mobile App.

 

The 30-year-old Brazilian star originally caught the promotion’s attention following an electric start to his professional career, as he earned a victory in seven of his first eight fights. Now a 16-fight veteran of Bellator MMA, Freire enters the contest having won six of his last nine bouts, including knockout finishes over division powerhouses Ryan Couture, David Rickels, and most notably Derek Campos in the pair’s first brawl two years ago. The second round victory over Campos marked only the second time in his career that an opponent was able to finish him via knockout. Freire has already put together a stellar 2016 campaign, with wins over Couture and Kevin Souza, as well as a lightweight title shot against Michael Chandler. “Pitbull” will look to further cement his feet atop the division’s elite with a strong performance against the equally-tested veteran Campos.

 

Prior to an undisclosed injury, Campos was originally set for a rematch with “Pitbull” in Italy at “Bellator 152,” but now the 28-year-old Texan will have his shot at revenge even closer to home base. Hailing from Lubbock, Texas, “The Stallion” comes in having won eight of his last 11 bouts, including knockout victories over Melvin Guillard and Estevan Payan. With a professional record of 3-1 in Thackerville, including a KOTC Junior Welterweight Championship in 2012, Campos has clearly claimed WinStar World Casino & Resort his home away from home. Currently riding a recent string of success, Campos will look to add to his current two-fight winning streak and continue his dominance in OK.

 

The 29-year-old Teixeira continues to make a name for himself in Bellator MMA’s featherweight division, as he will make his fourth appearance under the promotion’s direction following three consecutive victories. Similar to his opponent, Teixeira also steps into the cage on a recent string of success, having won seven of his last eight bouts, including a trio of first round knockouts. Prior to his days with Bellator MMA, Teixeira began his professional career fighting exclusively in Brazil, posting an undefeated record of 12-0 with one draw. The upcoming bout marks only the fourth time in Teixeira’s nine year career that he will fight outside of his native Brazil. With 14 of his 19 career wins coming by way of knockout or submission, you can be sure to see “Macapa” go for the finishing blow early and often in this mouthwatering matchup.

 

Following the recent news of an undisclosed injury that forced Pat Curran to withdraw, Lawrence has agreed to fill in to face Teixeira. After beginning his professional career under the direction of Strikeforce, Lawrence has found a home in Bellator MMA’s formidable featherweight division. “The American Kid” has tallied a pair of highlight-reel knockouts since joining the Scott Coker-led promotion last year, including his most recent victory over Isao Kobayashi at “Bellator 157: Dynamite 2.” The emphatic finish was the fifth of his young career and fourth by way of knockout. Dating back to 2013, the 26-year-old striker has won five of his last six contests, three of which came by way of knockout. Hailing from Pacific, Missouri, the former UFC competitor will look to keep the ball rolling against another tough opponent in Teixeira.

 

Three-time All American wrestling prospect Jarod Trice will be making his highly anticipated professional debut, following his recent signing with the promotion earlier this year. Trice joins Aaron Pico, Ed Ruth and Tyrell Fortune as a few of the recent signees that make up the new wave of incredibly talented wrestling prospects to flock to Bellator MMA. The Detroit, Michigan native competed at Central Michigan University, where he has also earned a National Title at 120 kg and two Greco Roman National Titles, with one at 120 kg and another at 98 kg.The 27-year-old also saw a great deal of success following an impressive 50-pound weight-loss transformation, something that will surely come in handy in a sport that demands severe weight discipline.

 

Fighting out of Clinton, OK., Lee will not have to travel far when he makes his Bellator MMA debut inside WinStar World Casino & Resort in Thackerville, on December 3. The 41-year-old heavyweight has had a great deal of success to date, recording four wins over his five career bouts under the direction of regional promotions. “The Undertaker” has finished his opponent in the opening round of each of his four professional victories, including a brutal knockout in his most recent win earlier this year. Lee will drop down to the 205-pound division for his promotional debut, looking to crash the party that is top prospect Jarod Trice and his widely followed professional debut.

 

Complete “Bellator 167: Pitbull vs. Campos 2” Main Card:

Lightweight Main Event: Patricky “Pitbull” Freire (16-8) vs. Derek Campos (17-6)

Flyweight Feature Bout: Ilima MacFarlane (4-0) vs. Emily Ducote (4-1)

Welterweight Feature Bout: Chidi Njokuani (15-4, 1 NC) vs. Andre Fialho (7-0)

Featherweight Preliminary Bout: John Teixeira (19-1-2) vs. Justin Lawrence (9-3)

 

Updated Preliminary Card:

Light Heavyweight Preliminary Bout: Jarod Trice (Debut) vs. Brandon Lee (4-1)

Welterweight Preliminary Bout: Abdul Razak Al Hassan (5-0) vs. Dakota Cochrane (26-10)

Lightweight Preliiminary Bout: Jonathan Gary (11-6) vs. Aaron Roberson (5-4)

Featherweight Preliminary Bout: Brandon Philips (6-2) Stephen Banaszak (5-5)

Welterweight Preliminary Bout: Justin Patterson (7-1) vs. Codale Ford (11-8)

Welterweight Preliminary Bout: Fernando Gonzalez (Debut) vs. Chris Hicks (3-8)

FORMER DIVISION CHAMP MARCOS GALVAO RETURNS TO FACE L.C. DAVIS DURING OPENING NIGHT OF BELLATOR MMA DOUBLEHEADER AT WINSTAR WORLD CASINO & RESORT

 

 

CHRIS HONEYCUTT-BEN REITER MIDDLEWEIGHT BOUT PUTS STAMP ON STACKED MAIN CARD

SANTA MONICA, CALIF. (October 31, 2016) – A bantamweight feature fight pitting Marcos Galvao (17-7-1) against L.C. Davis (23-7) and a middleweight clash between Chris Honeycutt (8-1, 1 NC) and Ben Reiter (17-1-1) have been added to the main card of “Bellator 166: Dantas vs. Warren 2” inside WinStar World Casino & Resort in Thackerville, OK., on December 2.

The first night of entertainment – “Bellator 166: Dantas vs. Warren 2” — will feature a bantamweight world title rematch between current champion Eduardo Dantas (18-4) and former belt holder Joe Warren (14-5). In addition, a featherweight clash pitting undefeated prospect A.J. McKee (5-0) against Emmanuel Sanchez (13-3) will also air live and free on the SPIKE-televised card.

Tickets for the unique doubleheader event start at just $45 and can be purchased at the WinStar World Casino & Resort Box Office, as well as Ticketmaster and Bellator.com.

“Bellator 166: Dantas vs. Warren 2” airs live and free on Friday on SPIKE at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT. “Bellator 167” airs live and free on Saturday on SPIKE at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT. Preliminary bouts for both events will stream live on Bellator.com and The Bellator Mobile App. Additional bouts will be announced in the coming weeks.

Brazilian superstar Marcos Galvao returns to action having won seven of his last nine and is ready for another push at the division’s belt. Hailing from Amazonas, Brazil, the illusive “Loro” has only been finished once in the past seven years, while conversely finishing his opponent in five of his 11 wins over that same period. Now Galvao returns to WinStar World Casino & Resort, the same venue where he fought and defeated Joe Warren for bantamweight gold at “Bellator 135.” Subsequently, Warren will also prepare to compete at “Bellator 166: Dantas vs. Warren 2,” as he and Eduardo Dantas will face off in the main event. Needless to say, the 34-year-old Galvao will have tremendous motivation to win, as the division he once championed dominates a stacked main card in Thackerville.

Davis enters the contest for the fifth time under the Bellator MMA banner, earning victories in three of his first four bouts with the promotion. The 35-year-old bantamweight has finished his opponent in 15 of his 23 career wins, including 11 in the opening round. A winner in seven of his last nine contests, the Kansas City, Missouri native consistently finds himself amid conversation with the division’s top contenders. Davis hopes to replicate the same success that he had in his most recent victory over Hideo Tokoro at “Bellator 135,” where his split decision win was labeled Yahoo! Sports’ “Best Fight of the Half-Year.” The former Pratt Community College wrestling coach now faces an opportunity to climb the ranks in a tasty matchup against one of the game’s best.

A six-fight veteran of Bellator MMA, Honeycutt made a lasting impression in his first two appearances under the promotion, recording back-to-back knockouts. Fighting out of Fresno, Calif., the 28-year-old knockout artist began his professional career with an impressive streak of six consecutive victories, including five finishes and four knockouts. “The Cutt” made a successful transition to the welterweight division in his Bellator MMA debut in 2014, before returning to the middleweight class in his most recent win over Mikkel Parlo at “Bellator 156.”

After making his professional debut in 2011, Reiter collected sixteen wins before surrendering his first career loss. The 29-year-old New Yorker competed mainly in Peru early in his career, fighting under the direction of Inka Fighting Championship, before joining the Bellator MMA fray in 2014. Since making his promotional debut for the Scott Coker-led organization, “The Hunter” has added three more victories to his already impressive résumé, as he quickly finds himself among the division’s elite. With nine of his 17 career wins coming by way of knockout or submission, Reiter hopes to add to that total with another finish in the first of a two-night special doubleheader in Thackerville, OK. Standing at six feet three inches, Reiter will look to expose his opponent Honeycutt with a significant advantage in both height and reach.

 

Complete “Bellator 166: Dantas vs. Warren 2” Main Card:

Bantamweight World Title Main Event: Eduardo Dantas (18-4) vs. Joe Warren (14-5)

Featherweight Co-Main Event: A.J. McKee (5-0) vs. Emmanuel Sanchez (13-3)

Bantamweight Feature Bout: Marcos Galvao (17-7-1) vs. L.C. Davis (23-7)

Middleweight Feature Bout: Chris Honeycutt (8-1, 1 NC) vs. Ben Reiter (17-1-1)

 

Updated Preliminary Card:

Featherweight Preliminary Bout: Treston Thomison (9-4) vs. Ray Wood (7-2)

Lightweight Preliminary Bout: Chris Jones (10-4) vs. Derrick Adkins (7-2)

Light Heavyweight Preliminary Bout: Kennedy Nzechukwu (Debut) vs. Jon Lair (2-0)

Welterweight Preliminary Bout: Chance Rencountre (8-2) Levi Queen (8-3)

Middleweight Preliminary Bout: Gregory Babene (17-11) vs. Emiliano Sordi (14-5)

SECOND NIGHT OF BELLATOR DOUBLEHEADER FEATURES FLYWEIGHT BOUT PITTING UNDEFEATED ILIMA MACFARLANE AGAINST EMILY DUCOTE AT WINSTAR WORLD CASINO & RESORT

 

CHIDI NJOKUANI-ANDRE FIALHO ALSO ADDED TO MAIN CARD OF ‘BELLATOR 167’ ON DECEMBER 3

SANTA MONICA, CALIF. (October 21, 2016) – A flyweight clash pitting Ilima-Lei MacFarlane (4-0) against Emily Ducote (4-1) and a welterweight bout pitting Chidi Njokuani (15-4, 1 NC) against Andre Fialho (7-0) have been added to the main card of “Bellator 167: Curran vs. Teixeira,” which will take place inside WinStar World Casino & Resort in Thackerville, OK., on Saturday, December 3.

The second night of entertainment – “Bellator 167” — will feature a featherweight main event between Pat Curran (22-7) and John Teixeira (19-1-2), while “Bellator 166” is headlined by a bantamweight world title rematch pitting current champion Eduardo Dantas (18-4) against Joe Warren (14-5) and a featherweight bout pitting undefeated prospect A.J. McKee (5-0) against Emmanuel Sanchez (13-3).

Tickets for the unique doubleheader event start at just $45 and can be purchased at the WinStar World Casino & Resort Box Office, as well as Ticketmaster and Bellator.com.

“Bellator 167: Curran vs. Teixeira” airs live and free on Saturday on SPIKE at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT., while “Bellator 166: Dantas vs. Warren 2” also airs live and free on Friday on SPIKE at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT. Preliminary bouts for both events will stream live on Bellator.com and The Bellator Mobile App. Additional bouts will be announced in the coming weeks.

Possibly no name is growing faster in the MMA community than Ilima-Lei MacFarlane’s, as the 26-year-old flyweight has rapidly climbed the ranks with four consecutive victories and three finishes. The undefeated submission specialist has emerged victorious in her first three bouts under the Scott Coker-led promotion, and finishing both Amber Tackett and Rebecca Ruth via submission. Hailing from Honolulu, Hawaii, “The Ilimanator” has secured one career knockout victory, which came just 10 seconds into her first professional bout and spread virally around the internet. MacFarlane will now direct her attention to another one of Bellator MMA’s top young female competitors, Emily Ducote.

The 23-year-old Ducote will look to add to an already impressive 2016 campaign, having earned victories in each of her four fights this year. Ducote’s most recent pair of wins have come under the Bellator MMA umbrella, recording back-to-back second round submission finishes over Brazilian flyweights Bruna Vargas and Kenya Miranda. Ducote will now look to add to her current four-fight winning streak, as she prepares for what is undoubtedly the toughest opponent of her young career. A native of Oklahoma City, “Gordinha” returns home to fight in her back yard, where she anticipates a sold out WinStar World Casino & Resort chock full of close friends and family.

Njokuani made his presence felt early in his career, recording finishes in each of his first seven career victories, including six knockouts and six first round finishes. “Chidi Bang Bang” continued to see success with his knockout power, as 10 of his 15 career wins came by way of knockout or submission. You’d be hard pressed to find a more consistent fighter than Njokuani right now, the 27-year-old Las Vegas native enters the cage in search of his seventh consecutive victory and 11 of his last 12, dating back to 2012. Njokuani has won both of his first two bouts under the direction of Bellator MMA since joining the promotion in 2015, with key victories over the likes of Ricky Rainey and Thiago Jambo Goncalves. He hopes to add to that list when he joins his opponent Andre Fialho on December 3.

With an unblemished mark of 7-0, Fialho joins his opponent Njokuani as one of the most feared knockout artists in the game. The 22-year-old welterweight has finished each of his seven opponents and tacked on six knockouts. Possibly even more impressive is the manner in which the young Portuguese prospect has defeated his opponents, with six of the seven victories coming in the first round and three in the first minute of action. Since joining the Bellator MMA fray earlier this year, Fialho has recorded first round knockout wins over Manuel Meraz and Rick Reger, proving early in his career that he belongs with the top dogs. We can be sure to see some fireworks fly when Fialho enters the cage inside WinStar World Casino & Resort in Thackerville this December.

 

Updated “Bellator 167: Curran vs. Teixeira” Main Card:

Featherweight Main Event: Pat Curran (22-7) vs. John Teixeira (19-1-2)

Flyweight Feature Bout: Ilima MacFarlane (4-0) vs. Emily Ducote (4-1)

Welterweight Feature Bout: Chidi Njokuani (15-4, 1 NC) vs. Andre Fialho (7-0)

BELLATOR MMA PRESENTS A SPECIAL DOUBLEHEADER ON DECEMBER 2 & 3 FROM THE WINSTAR WORLD CASINO & RESORT IN OK.

NIGHT ONE WILL SEE A BANTAMWEIGHT WORLD TITLE REMATCH PITTING CHAMPION EDUARDO DANTAS AGAINST JOE WARREN

 

NIGHT TWO HEADLINED BY FEATHERWEIGHT MAIN EVENT BETWEEN FORMER CHAMPION PAT CURRAN AND JOHN TEIXEIRA

 

 

SANTA MONICA, CALIF. (October 10, 2016) – Bellator MMA is thrilled to announce the promotion’s first ever Friday/Saturday doubleheader event. The first night of entertainment will feature a bantamweight world title rematch pitting current division champion Eduardo Dantas (18-4) against a dangerous former two-division champion Joe Warren (14-5), which joins a previously announced featherweight showdown between A.J. McKee (5-0) and Emmanuel Sanchez (13-3).

 

Meanwhile, the second night of action will be headlined by a featherweight fight pitting former champion Pat Curran (22-7) against John Teixeira (19-1-2).

 

The unique doubleheader event will take place on Friday, December 2 and Saturday, December 3 inside WinStar World Casino & Resort in Thackerville, OK. Tickets start at just $45 and can be purchased at the WinStar World Casino & Resort Box Office, as well as Ticketmaster and Bellator.com.

 

“Bellator 166: Dantas vs. Warren 2” airs live and free on Friday on SPIKE at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT, while preliminary bouts will stream live on Bellator.com and The Bellator Mobile App.

 

“Bellator 167: Curran vs. Teixeira” airs live and free on Saturday on SPIKE at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT, while preliminary bouts will stream live on Bellator.com and The Bellator Mobile App. Additional bouts will be announced in the coming weeks.

 

Fresh off a win over Marcos Galvao that crowned him bantamweight champion, the 27-year-old Dantas will look to defend his belt for the first time this year. The elusive Brazilian enters the contest having won 11 of his past 13 bouts, including seven finishes, giving him a total of 10 stoppages over his 18 career victories. Since making his promotional debut in 2011, “Dudu” has cemented himself among the Bellator MMA elite, collecting wins in eight of his nine appearances, with the lone loss coming at the hands of his upcoming opponent, Joe Warren. After successfully defending his title twice, Dantas lost the belt to Warren via unanimous decision at “Bellator 128.” Now that he has the gold around his waist again, Dantas will need to put forth his best effort to ensure history does not repeat itself against “The Baddest Man on the Planet.”

 

Warren will be looking to duplicate his success against the feisty Dantas, after defeating him in a five round, 25-minute bloodbath that took place in the same venue nearly two years ago. The win capped off a five-fight winning streak and allowed Warren to unify the 135-pound title. A native of Denver, Colorado, “The Baddest Man on the Planet” has now emerged victorious in seven of his last nine bouts, including his most recent finish over former UFC competitor Sirwan Kakai at “Bellator 161: Kongo vs. Johnson.” At 39 years old, the former two-division Bellator MMA champion will now attempt to become the oldest fighter to win a championship in Bellator history.

 

Bellator MMA veteran Pat Curran will enter the cage for the 17th time under the direction of the Scott Coker-led promotion, which will tie him with David Rickels for the most in the promotion’s history. On top of that, “Paddy Mike” will have the opportunity to join Patricio “Pitbull” for the most wins in Bellator MMA history, with 13, if he can emerge victorious. Since joining the promotion in 2010, Curran has accrued 12 wins, including notable victories over current featherweight champion Daniel Straus, former featherweight titleholder Patricio “Pitbull,” and former bantamweight/featherweight king Joe Warren. The 29-year-old Crystal Lake, Illinois native comes in on a hot streak, having won two consecutive bouts and nine of his last 12. With two World Title victories and a pair of successful title defenses under his belt, Curran has proven time and time again that his name belongs atop Bellator MMA’s always-competitive featherweight division.

 

The 29-year-old Teixeira continues to make a name for himself in Bellator MMA’s featherweight division, as he makes his fourth appearance under the promotion’s direction. Similar to his opponent, Teixeira also steps into the cage on a recent string of success, having won three straight and seven of his last eight bouts, including a trio of first-round knockouts. Prior to his days with Bellator MMA, Teixeira began his professional career fighting exclusively in Brazil, posting an undefeated record of 12-0 with one draw. The upcoming bout marks only the fourth time in Teixeira’s nine year career that he will fight outside of his native Brazil. With 14 of his 19 career wins coming by way of knockout or submission, you can be sure to see “Macapa” go for the finishing blow early and often in this mouthwatering matchup.

 

Updated “Bellator 166: Dantas vs. Warren 2” Main Card:

Bantamweight World Title Main Event: Eduardo Dantas (18-4) vs. Joe Warren (14-5)

Featherweight Feature Bout: A.J. McKee (5-0) vs. Emmanuel Sanchez (13-3)

 

Updated “Bellator 167: Curran vs. Teixeira”Main Card:

Featherweight Main Event: Pat Curran (22-7) vs. John Teixeira (19-1-2)