Bellator declared to ESPN its forthcoming tentpole event, which is set to take place May 11 at Allstate Arena in Rosemont, Illinois. The card features lots of fascinating matchups, and I will list them below along with my initial thoughts in today’s MMA odds and ends.
Michael Chandler vs. Patricio «Pitbull» Freire, Bellator 221
The main event of Bellator 221 will be a five-round superfight between Bellator lightweight champion Michael Chandler and Bellator featherweight champion Patricio»Pitbull» Freire. Chandler’s belt will probably be up for grabs in this one as Pitbull is moving up in weight for a fight that will determine arguably the best fighter in Bellator history. Chandler (19-4) is 16-4 in Bellator and just won back the lightweight title from Brent Primus in his last struggle. He’s won seven of his last eight fights overall and with a win here over Pitbull would solidify himself as the promotion’s greatest home-grown gift . Pitbull (28-4) is also 16-4 in Bellator and is coming off of back-to-back featherweight title defenses over Emmanuel Sanchez and Daniel Wiechel. What a fight between two fights that are amazing. Chandler will probably be preferred here as he’s the larger fighter, but Pitbull is a stud and shouldn’t be counted out. Based on the internet, Pitbull may be well worth a look as a dog.
Pat Curran vs. AJ McKee, Bellator 221
Former Bellator featherweight champion Pat Curran will come back to the cage when he chooses on rising star AJ McKee. Curran (23-7) is 13-4 overall in Bellator and is among the top fighters to fight for the promotion. He is really riding a three-fight win streak at this time, though he hasn’t fought since an October 2017 decision win over John Teixeira. McKee (13-0) made his Bellator and expert MMA introduction in October 2015 and has not looked back since as he’s undefeated and contains buzzsawed through every competitor that Bellator has put his way. Curran is a good gatekeeper at this point of his career, but McKee is a true stud and I fully expect him to win this battle. There’s no doubt that the undefeated rising star is going to be a massive favorite here.
Douglas Lima vs. winner of Paul Daley/Michael Page, Bellator 221
The semifinals of the Bellator Welterweight Grand Prix will take place on this particular card featuring Douglas Lima contrary to the winner of this weekend Paul Daley vs. Michael Page fight. There is not much to say about this however as he don’t know the matchup, however, Lima vs. either of those guys makes for an wonderful fight.
Jake Hager vs. TBA, Bellator 221
And Jake Hager will return to the cage for his second MMA fight against a yet-to-be-named opponent. Hager (1-0) filed JW Kiser in his Bellator and MMA debut. He seems like a very intriguing heavyweight prospect considering his size and strength, though I would anticipate Bellator to give him a second»can» because of his next battle because they continue to slow-build him. I don’t have any doubt Bellator is going to have the ability to discover another Kiser clone and pay them a couple thousand dollars to get finished by Hager.
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