The Bellator MMA featherweight tournament kicked off tonight at The Arena at Gwinnett Center in Duluth, Georgia. The quarterfinals did not lack for action, with fighters Marlon Sandro, Mike Richman, Alexandre Bezerra, and Magomedrasul “Frodo” Khasbulaev all picking up wins in the Bellator cage tonight on a rainy night in Georgia.
Sandro Edges Stepanyan
Marlon Sandro and Akop Stepanyan made it interesting in the final quarterfinal of the evening. Sandro would win the bout, but took some damage in the process as Akop would batter the Nova Unaio product with vicious kicks that came from all angles. The bout would see some controversy however, as Sandro rolled for a leglock and Stepaynan grabbed the cage in the second. The referee in charge would discreetly take a point for the foul between rounds that the crowd was largely unaware of. Sandro would control the third and advance with the majority decision.
Richman Crushes Jackson
Mike “The Marine” Richman destroyed Mitch Jackson in our third quarterfinal at the arena. Jackson never quite recovered from an early straight punch that staggered him early. Richman would pick him apart for the duration of the round, knocking him down multiple times, before connecting with a vicious headkick. Referee Dana Miraglotta would allow Jackson a chance to recover, but the downed fighter ended up taking a lot of unneeded shots. Jackson would remain downed for a time in the cage after the finish and needed multiple people to assist him to back to the locker room.
Mike Richman now advances to the semifinals against Alexandre “Popo” Bezerra.
Bezerra Submits Silva
Alexandre “Popo” Bezerra was in total control of tonight’s featherweight quarterfinal with Genair da Silva. Bezerra staggered with a nasty punch. While Silva would land a takedown, he made a fatal mistake and gave up wrist control to “Popo.” The armbar was all the talented Brazilian needed to finish his fellow countryman and advance to the next round.
Khasbulaev Steamrolls Guerreiro
The Bellator quarterfinal kicked off with a solid matchup between Magomedrasul Khasbulazev and Fabricio Guerreiro. While Guerreiro was favored, “Frodo” did not seem phased in the least. The Dagestani fighter pressed the action from start to finish. While Guerreiro started the submission war, Khasbulaev would escalate it with various leg attacks that the Brazilian was able to avoid with flexibility.
The second round was less than favorable for the Brazilian, as “Frodo” would again get the fight to the ground and secure the mount easily. Khasbulaev would not relent and forced the Brazilian to submit due to an arm triangle.
- Featherweight Quarterfinal: Marlon Sandro def. Akop Stepanyan via majority decision (28-28,29-28,29-28)
- Featherweight Quarterfinal: Mike Richman def. Mitch Jackson via TKO (strikes) at 4:57 of Round 1
- Featherweight Quarterfinal: Alexandre Bezerra def. Genair da Silva at 1:40 of Round 1
- Featherweight Quarterfinal: Magomedrasul Khasbulaev def. Fabricio Guerreiro via submission (arm-triangle) at 1:15 of Round 2