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Michael Page has a new opponent for Bellator 158, as he will face Brazilian veteran Evangelista Santos in a featured welterweight bout on July 16 in London.
Promotion officials announced the new matchup on Thursday. Santos replaces Fernando Gonzalez, who was forced to withdraw from the contest due to visa issues. Bellator also confirmed that a previously reported 170-pound clash between Paul Daley and Douglas Lima will headline the card following the death of Kimbo Slice, who was scheduled to face James Thompson in the original main event, earlier this week.
It's the rivalry rematch that just can't come together.
Josh Koscheck is injured and out of his fight with Paul Daley at Bellator 158 on July 16 in London, MMA Fighting confirmed with Bellator officials Monday. Daley will now face former Bellator welterweight champion Douglas Lima instead. ESPN was the first to report the news.
Koscheck and Daley were supposed to fight on the same card in January in Koscheck's adopted hometown of Fresno, Calif., to set up a future bout. Koscheck was slated to face Matt Secor in the main event of his Bellator debut, but got injured in training and had to withdraw. Daley took over the main event spot, defeating Andy Uhrich. Afterward, Daley slammed Koscheck in the post-fight interview.
That long-awaited Josh Koscheck vs. Paul Daley rematch will have to wait a little longer.
Koscheck (17-10 MMA, 0-0 BMMA), a former UFC fighter who’s yet to make his Bellator debut, was forced out of a Bellator 158 bout with Daley (38-13-2 MMA, 4-0 BMMA) for undisclosed reasons, and former welterweight champion Douglas Lima (26-6 MMA, 8-2 UFC) has stepped in a replacement.
A Bellator rep confirmed the lineup change with MMAjunkie. ESPN.com first reported it.
Justin Lawrence will meet Isao Kobayashi in the featured preliminary bout at Bellator 157 "Dynamite 2" on June 24.
Promotion officials announced the featherweight pairing on Friday. Bellator 157 takes place at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis and is headlined by a heavyweight showdown between Quinton Jackson and Satoshi Ishii. The evening’s main card, which will also see Michael Chandler face Patricky Freire for the vacant lightweight title, airs on Spike TV at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT. The preliminary draw will stream on Bellator.com beginning at approximately 6:30 ET/5:30 CT.
Undefeated prospect Darrion Caldwell will look to keep his march toward a bantamweight title going when he meets Joe Taimanglo in the main event of Bellator 159.
In addition to the bout between Caldwell (9-0 MMA, 6-0 BMMA) and Taimanglo (22-6-1 MMA, 5-3 BMMA), Bellator announced a lightweight co-main event featuring Melvin Guillard (32-16-2 MMA, 0-2 BMMA) and David Rickels (17-4 MMA, 12-4 BMMA).
Shahbulat Shamhalaev was taken to hospital with various gunshot wounds on Wednesday following an altercation at a local restaurant in Makhachkala, Dagestan.
Shamhalaev, a former Bellator featherweight tournament winner, was reportedly shot five times by unnamed assailants. He was immediately taken to hospital, where he underwent surgery and had a kidney removed at approximately 4pm Moscow time.
The former title challenger is in stable condition but remains in intensive care.
Alexis Dufresne is surprisingly realistic about her position in Bellator’s women’s featherweight division after pulling off the biggest victory of her career with an upset of Marloes Coenen at Bellator 155 earlier this month.
Dufresne (6-2 MMA, 1-0 BMMA) stepped in as an injury replacement for Julia Budd (8-2 MMA, 2-0 BMMA) in a fight meant to decide Bellator’s inaugural women’s 145-pound champion. Once Budd pulled out, however, the promotion changed the fight with Coenen (23-7 MMA, 2-1 BMMA) to a non-title affair.
Marloes Coenen and Alexis Dufresne
The call to fight Coenen came with just two weeks to prepare after Dufresne had taken a 16-month layoff from the sport to give birth. Dufresne was five pounds overweight for the fight, which ruffled the feathers of her opponent. But she secured the triangle-armbar victory to join Cristiane “Cyborg” Justino and Miesha Tate as one of the few fighters to beat Coenen, a former Strikeforce champion, since 2009.
Unlike many in the UFC’s flyweight division, Zach Makovsky knows what it’s like to wear gold around his waist.
A former Bellator champ, he’s been trying to trying to win it back ever since he signed with the industry-leader three years ago. So you’d think he’d take any necessary measures to get a title shot, especially given his rough go of things in his past four bouts. At 1-3, no one has Makovsky at the top of the list for champ Demetrious Johnson’s next outing.
But for “Fun Size,” it’s not necessarily the time to get desperate.
Before the UFC changed the parameters of the show, Makovsky could have completely revitalized his career in six short weeks by getting cast in “The Ultimate Fighter 24.” Originally slated to feature flyweights who qualified at an open tryout, “TUF 24” will now feature flyweight champions from other promotions around the world.
Bellator officials today announced three new additions to next month’s Bellator 156 card, including Chris Honeycutt moving up to middleweight to face Mikkel Parlo on the evening’s main card.
Additionally, A.J. Matthews vs. Ben Reiter and Thiago Goncalves vs. Ricky Rainey are now scheduled for the preliminary card.
With the additions to the card, the Bellator 156 lineup now includes:
MAIN CARD (Spike, 9 p.m. ET)
Marcos Galvao vs. Eduardo Dantas
Douglas Lima vs. Chidi Njokuani
Brandon Halsey vs. John Salter
Chris Honeycutt vs. Mikkel Parlo
PRELIMINARY CARD (MMAjunkie, 7 p.m. ET)
A.J. Matthews vs. Ben Reiter
Thiago Goncalves vs. Ricky Rainey
Jermaine McDermott vs. Blake Watkins
Christian Buron-Navarro vs. Paul Ruiz
Javy Ayala vs. opponent TBA
Nick Bustamante vs. Antoine Smith
Carrington Banks vs. C.J. Keith
Chris Avila vs. Justin Smitley
John Paul Elias vs. opponent TBA
Jose Cabezas vs. Chris Lewis
Luis Jauregui vs. Ryan Tobar
Fernando Gonzalez and Michael Page are seemingly just not destined to share the Bellator cage together – at least not yet, anyway.
For the second time in as many attempts, a fight between Gonzalez (25-13 MMA, 5-0 BMMA) and Page (10-0 MMA, 6-0 BMMA) has fallen apart. Gonzalez is out of a planned Bellator 158 matchup, scheduled for July 16 at The O2 in London, due to issues receiving a travel visa to England for the event.
Bellator MMA announced Friday night that a women’s flyweight bout has been added to the eagerly-anticipated Bellator: Dynamite 2 event, which is set for June 24 at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis. Promotion officials confirmed that Ilima-Lei Macfarlane will take on Rebecca Ruth on the card, which is anchored by the heavyweight bout between former UFC 205-pound champ Quinton Jackson and Satoshi Ishii.
Macfarlane has been impressive since turning pro, having won all three of her bouts, two of which have been inside the Bellator cage. The last time “The Ilimanator” competed, she submitted Amber Tackett via first-round armbar at Bellator 148.
Hisaki Kato scored one of MMA's best KOs of 2015 when he walloped Joe Schilling in 2015. Now the two men will rematch under the Bellator banner next month, but this time it'll be in the kickboxing ring.
When news came out that Julia Budd would face former Strikeforce champion Marloes Coenen for the inaugural featherweight title on the Bellator prelims, there was a fair amount of public consternation. A lot of people disagreed with Bellator’s decision to put a title fight on a digital stream, regardless of the logic behind it.
The logic behind it, of course, was to draw more attention to Bellator’s streaming presence, which in a roundabout way it did.
Bellator and UFC dueled somewhat evenly in going head-to-head on a Saturday night where nearly 1.5 million fans watched MMA between 8 and 10 p.m. on cable television.
The UFC aired the prelims for UFC 198, doing 786,000 viewers, headlined by Demian Maia vs. Matt Brown, a stronger than usual FS 1 main event. It was the lowest prelim number before a pay-per-view so far this year. The head-to-head competition with Bellator was probably at least partially responsible. The prelims for UFC 197 did 835,000 viewers.
The Brown vs. Maia main event peaked at 985,000 viewers for the final rounds.
Bellator, which ran from 8 p.m. to 10:22 p.m., headlined by Phil Davis vs. King Mo Lawal, did 709,000 viewers, slightly above what Bellator usually does, a number fairly impressive given it was not on the regular night, started an hour earlier than usual and had the UFC competition.
In the key 18-49 demo, UFC had an edge in viewers by 399,000 to 346,000.
Spike, which airs Bellator, is available in about nine million more homes than FS 1.
Bellator light heavyweight Phil Davis not only earned a shot at champ Liam McGeary, but the highest disclosed payday at this past Saturday’s Bellator 154 event.
Davis (16-3 MMA, 3-0 BMMA) took home $60,000 for his unanimous-decision win over Muhammed Lawal (19-5 MMA, 8-4 BMMA), who earned $30,000, in the Spike-televised headliner of this past Saturday’s event at SAP Center in San Jose, Calif.
United Kingdom-based heavyweights Mark Godbeer and James Mulheron will square off for bragging rights of the region in a featured bout at Bellator 158, promotion officials announced Tuesday.
Godbeer is fresh off a second-round TKO win over Stuart Austin at BAMMA 25 last weekend and looks to keep his three-fight winning streak in full effect against his rival. He last appeared for the California-based promotion at Bellator 152, when he was knocked out by UFC veteran Cheick Kongo.
Although the fight lost its title status, it’s been elevated to Friday’s Bellator 155 main card.
Officials today announced a women’s featherweight bout between former Strikeforce champion Marloes Coenen (23-6 MMA, 2-0 BMMA) and Alexis Dufresne (5-2 MMA, 0-0 BMMA) has been elevated from the preliminary card to the televised main card.
The full Bellator 155 lineup now includes:
MAIN CARD (Spike, 9 p.m. ET)
Champ Rafael Carvalho vs. Melvin Manhoef – for middleweight title
Pat Curran vs. Georgi Karakhanyan
Dan Charles vs. Augusto Sakai
Julia Budd vs. Marloes Coenen
Joey Beltran vs. Chase Gormley
PRELIMINARY CARD (MMAjunkie, 6:30 p.m. ET)
Marcin Held vs. Dave Jansen
Tyler Freeland vs. Joe Hamilton
Veta Arteaga vs. Jackie Vandenburgh
Hamilton Ash vs. Vince Morales
Casey Johnson vs. Brendon Raftery
Scott Thometz vs. Josh Tyler
Will Noland vs. Sean Powers
Erick Cronkhite vs. Ricky Steele
Olly Bradstreet vs. Jesse Brock
Bellator is hanging onto one of its top homegrown talents.
Darrion Caldwell announced Monday on The MMA Hour with Ariel Helwani that he has signed a long-term contract extension with Bellator MMA. The deal spans seven fights. Caldwell said he had one fight remaining on his previous contract with the promotion.
"Just believing in what they had in mind and their plan for me, that's the biggest thing," Caldwell said. "It's bigger than me. I know they have a vision. Even though I have a vision as well -- my vision is to be the world champ -- they have a vision on how to put me in a position to make sure I maximize everything outside of the cage. And so, I feel like we touched on a lot of subjects there. I think we've got a star in the making."