Rematch to determine inaugural women's flyweight champion at Bellator 186

Bellator will crown its first female 125-pound champion at Bellator 186.

Ilima Macfarlane (6-0 MMA, 5-0 BMMA) faces Emily Ducote (6-2 MMA, 4-1 BMMA) in a rematch of their December 2016 bout at Bellator 167, Bellator President Scott Coker today told ESPN.com.

Bellator 186 takes place Nov. 3 at Bryce Jordan Center on Penn State’s campus in University Park, Pa. The main card airs on Spike following prelims on MMAjunkie.

Macfarlane won the duo’s first meeting via unanimous decision.

Macfarlane, 27, has fought once since that win. In April at Bellator 178, she submitted Jessica Middleton via first-round armbar. It was her sixth straight victory and fifth career stoppage.

Following the loss to Macfarlane, which halted a four-fight winning streak, Ducote has fought twice for Bellator. The 23-year-old submitted Katy Collins and picked up a decision victory over Middleton.

The UFC will crown its own 125-pound female champion in December with the conclusion of “The Ultimate Fighter 26.” The long-running reality show’s tournament format will determine the inaugural champion of the UFC’s newest female weight class.

The latest Bellator 186 card now includes:

  • Champ Ryan Bader vs. Linton Vassell – for light heavyweight title
  • Emily Ducote vs. Ilima MacFarlane – for inaugural women’s flyweight title
  • Phil Davis vs. TBA
  • Ed Ruth vs. TBA
  • Saad Awad vs. Zach Freeman

For more on Bellator 186, check out the MMA Rumors section of the site.

Filed under: Bellator, News
Source: MMA Junkie

Bellator 181 post-event facts: Joe Warren creeps toward Bellator's all-time wins record

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Filed under: Bellator, News

The third chapter in the competitive story between Derek Campos and Brandon Girtz took place Friday in Bellator 181’s headliner at WinStar World Casino and Resort in Thackerville, Okla.

Campos (19-6 MMA, 7-4 BMMA) gained a 2-1 advantage in the series when a knee opened a cut on Girtz’s (14-7 MMA, 6-5 BMMA) forehead, leading to a doctor’s stoppage at the end of the second round in the Spike-televised main event. Prelims streamed on MMAjunkie.

For all the numbers to come out of Bellator’s latest event, check below for 20 post-event facts.

* * * *

General

Michael C. Williams

Betting favorites went 3-0 on the main card. One fight had even odds.

Betting favorites remained 8-3 in Bellator main events this year. Campos vs. Girtz closed with even odds.

Total fight time for the four-bout main card was 44:37.

* * * *

Main card

Derek Campos and Brandon Girtz

Campos’ four-fight winning streak is the longest of his Bellator career.

Campos has earned all of his Bellator stoppage victories by strikes.

Girtz suffered his third consecutive loss, the longest skid of his career. He hasn’t earned a victory since November 2015.

Girtz has suffered both of his Bellator stoppage losses due to strikes.

John Salter

John Salter’s (14-3 MMA, 4-0 BMMA) four-fight Bellator winning streak in middleweight competition is the second longest active streak in the division behind Rafael Carvalho (five).

Salter has earned all 13 of his career victories by stoppage.

Salter’s three submission victories in Bellator middleweight competition are tied with Justin Butcher for most in divisional history.

Kendall Grove (23-17 MMA, 4-4 BMMA) fell to 5-7 in his past 12 fights.

Grove has suffered 12 of his 17 career losses by stoppage.

Grove suffered his first submission loss since Dec. 1, 2012 – a span of 1,686 days (more than four years) and 11 fights.

Emily Ducote

Emily Ducote’s (6-2 MMA, 4-1 BMMA) four Bellator victories in women’s flyweight competition are second most in divisional history behind Ilima Macfarlane (five).

Jessica Middleton (2-2 MMA, 2-2 BMMA) suffered the first decision loss of her career.

Joe Warren’s (15-6 MMA, 13-5 BMMA) 13 victories in Bellator competition are tied with lightweight champ Michael Chandler for second most in company history behind Patricio Freire (14).

Warren’s nine victories in Bellator bantamweight competition are second most in company history behind champ Eduardo Dantas (10).

Joe Warren

Warren has alternated wins and losses over his past seven fights.

Warren has earned 10 of his 15 career victories by decision. That includes nine of his 13 wins under the Bellator banner.

Steve Garcia (7-2 MMA, 5-2 BMMA) has suffered both of his career losses by decision.

For complete coverage of Bellator 181, check out the MMA Events section of the site.

Filed under: Bellator, News
Source: MMA Junkie

Bellator 181 highlights: A fight-ending forehead cut that looks like the Air Jordan logo

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Filed under: Bellator, Featured, News, Videos

Friday’s Bellator 181 headliner was a thriller – one that ended with an oddly shaped cut to one fighter’s forehead.

In the Spike-televised main event at WinStar World Casino and Resort in Thackerville, Okla., Derek Campos (19-6 MMA, 8-4 BMMA) took the 2-1 lead in his trilogy with Brandon Girtz (14-7 MMA, 6-5 BMMA) after scoring a second-round TKO stoppage win in the 158-pound catchweight fight.

The stoppage was the result of a nasty cut on the forehead of Girtz. As at-home viewers quickly noticed, the fight-ending gash had a familiar outline – one that looked like the Air Jordan “Jumpman” logo (via Twitter):

USA TODAY Sports photographer Kevin Jairaj captured the image (via Twitter):

Also on the card, fast-rising middleweight John Salter (14-3 MMA, 4-0 BMMA) put Kendall Grove (23-17 MMA, 4-4 BMMA) to sleep with a choke, flyweight Emily Ducote (6-2 MMA, 4-1 BMMA) edged tough late replacement Jessica Middleton (2-2 MMA, 2-2 BMMA), and former Bellator champ Joe Warren (15-6 MMA, 13-5 BMMA) easily outwrestled Steve Garcia (7-2 MMA, 4-2 BMMA) for a unanimous-decision win.

For more on Bellator 181, including a full event recap, check out the MMA Events section of the site.

Filed under: Bellator, Featured, News, Videos
Source: MMA Junkie

Bellator 181 pre-event facts: Joe Warren ties all-time record with 18th Bellator bout

Three weeks removed from the biggest event in company history, Bellator returns Friday with Bellator 181, which takes place at WinStar World Casino and Resort in Thackerville, Okla.

The main card, which airs on Spike following prelims on MMAjunkie, has experienced a variety of changes, but the final product sees Derek Campos (18-6 MMA, 7-4 BMMA) fight lightweight Brandon Girtz (14-6 MMA, 6-4 BMMA) in a trilogy bout.

They’ve split results in the previous encounters, but now one side will have the chance to close out the rivalry by winning the best-of-three series.

For more on the numbers behind the headliner, as well as the remainder of the card, check out 20 pre-event facts about Bellator 181.

* * * *

Main event

Derek Campos

Campos and Girtz become the second fighters in Bellator history to compete against the same opponent three or more times under the promotional banner. Patricio Freire and Daniel Straus, who have fought four times, are the others.

Campos’ three-fight winning streak is tied for the longest of his Bellator career.

Campos has earned five of his seven Bellator victories by decision.

Girtz enters the event on the first two-fight losing skid of his career. He hasn’t earned a victory since November 2015.

Girtz has earned 11 of his 15 career victories by stoppage. That includes four of his six Bellator wins.

Co-main event

Emily Ducote

Emily Ducote (5-2 MMA, 3-1 BMMA) competes in her fifth Bellator women’s flyweight bout, tied with Ilima Macfarlane for the most appearances in divisional history.

Ducote’s three Bellator stoppage victories in women’s flyweight competition are tied with Macfarlane for most in divisional history.

Ducote’s three Bellator submission victories in women’s flyweight competition are tied with Macfarlane for most in divisional history.

Remaining main card

Joe Warren

Joe Warren (14-6 MMA, 12-5 BMMA), 40, is the oldest of the eight fighters scheduled to compete on the main card.

Warren is the only fighter in Bellator history to win titles in two weight classes. He is a former featherweight and bantamweight titleholder.

Warren competes in his 18th Bellator bout, tied with Patricio Freire and David Rickels for most appearances in company history.

Warren competes in his 13th Bellator bantamweight bout, the most appearances in divisional history.

Warren’s 12 victories in Bellator competition are tied for third most in company history behind Freire (14) and Michael Chandler (13).

Warren’s eight victories in Bellator bantamweight competition are tied for second most in divisional history behind Eduardo Dantas (10).

Warren has alternated wins and losses over his past six fights. He suffered a loss in his most recent bout at Bellator 166 in December.

Steve Garcia (7-1 MMA, 5-1 BMMA), 25, is the youngest of the eight scheduled main card fighters.

Kendall Grove

Kendall Grove (23-16 MMA, 4-3 BMMA) is 5-5 in his past 10 fights dating back to 2013.

Grove has earned three of his four Bellator victories by stoppage.

Grove has suffered all three of his Bellator losses by knockout.

John Salter (13-3 MMA, 3-0 BMMA) has earned all of his career victories by stoppage. He’s also been stopped inside the distance in all his losses.

For more on Bellator 181, check out the MMA Rumors section of the site.

Filed under: Bellator, News
Source: MMA Junkie

Valerie Letourneau out of Friday's Bellator 181 event, Emily Ducote draws new opponent

On the same day Gegard Mousasi’s Bellator signing was made official, another one of the promotion’s free agent pickups has been forced to withdraw from her scheduled debut.

Bellator today announced Valerie Letourneau (8-6 MMA, 0-0 BMMA) has suffered an injury and is out of Friday’s women’s flyweight bout with Emily Ducote (5-2 MMA, 3-1 BMMA). She will be replaced by Jessica Middleton (2-1 MMA, 2-1 BMMA).

Bellator 181 takes place at Winstar World Casino & Resort in Thackerville, Okla. The main card airs on Spike following prelims on MMAjunkie.

Middleton is coming off a submission loss to top 125-pound contender Ilima Macfarlane in April. The fight marked her first career defeat after opening with back-to-back wins.

Ducote, meanwhile, makes her fifth Bellator appearance. She is coming off a first-round submission in April which helped her rebound from her first setback under the Bellator banner, which also came against Macfarlane.

For more on Bellator 181, check out the MMA Rumors section of the site.

Filed under: Bellator, News
Source: MMA Junkie