Bellator 183 post-event facts: Patricky Freire, Goiti Yamauchi produce record work

Bellator put on another solid event Saturday with Bellator 183, which took place at SAP Center in San Jose, Calif., with a Spike-televised main card following prelims streamed on MMAjunkie

In the main event, Patricky Freire (18-8 MMA, 11-7 BMMA) continued to put a damper on Benson Henderson’s (24-8 MMA, 1-3 BMMA) Bellator stint with a competitive split-decision victory over the former UFC and WEC lightweight champion.

A number of other notable names competed on the promotion’s 14th fight card of the year. For more on the numbers to come out of Bellator 183, check below for 25 post-event facts.

* * * *

General

Debuting fighters went 1-1 at the event.

Betting favorites went 2-3 on the main card.

Betting favorites fell to to 9-4 (with one even odds) in Bellator main events this year.

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

* * * *

Main card

Freire improved to 4-3 in Bellator main events.

Freire’s 11 victories in Bellator lightweight competition are tied with Michael Chandler for most in divisional history.

Henderson suffered consecutive losses for the first time in his Bellator career. He’s 3-5 in his past eight fights overall.

Henderson fell to 1-2 since he returned to the lightweight division in August 2016.

Henderson has suffered all three of his Bellator losses by decision.

Henderson fell to 0-3 in decision under the Bellator banner after going 9-1 on the scorecards during his UFC career.

Paul Daley (40-15-2 MMA, 6-2 UFC) has alternated wins and losses over his past five Bellator appearances.

Daley has earned 32 of his 40 career victories by stoppage.

Daley has earned all 32 career stoppage victories as a result of strikes. That includes five of his six Bellator wins.

Lorenz Larkin (18-7 MMA, 0-2 UFC) fell to 4-3 since he dropped to the welterweight division in January 2015.

Larkin fell to 5-5 in his past 10 fights.

Larkin has suffered both of his career stoppage losses by knockout.

Javy Ayala (10-6 MMA, 5-3 BMMA) suffered his first decision loss since Nov. 15, 2012 – a span of 1,773 days (nearly five years) and 10 fights.

Aaron Pico (1-1 MMA, 1-1 BMMA) was successful in his featherweight debut.

Pico earned a victory on his 21st birthday.

Justin Linn’s (7-4 MMA, 0-1 BMMA) three-fight losing skid is the longest of his career. He hasn’t earned a victory since September 2014.

Linn suffered the first knockout loss of his career.

Goiti Yamauchi (22-3 MMA, 8-2 UFC) improved to 3-0 since he moved up to the Bellator lightweight division in October 2016.

Yamauchi has earned 19 of his 22 career victories by stoppage. That includes eight of his nine Bellator wins.

Yamauchi has earned all three of his Bellator lightweight victories by stoppage.

Yamauchi’s six submission victories in Bellator competition are tied with Marcin Held and Alexandre Bezerra for most in company history.

Adam Piccolotti (9-1 MMA, 5-1 BMMA) has his nine-fight winning streak snapped for the first defeat of his career.

For complete coverage of Bellator 183, check out the MMA Events section of the site.

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Source: MMA Junkie

Roy Nelson's only problem with Bellator debut? Listening to coach

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SAN JOSE, Calif. – Bellator heavyweight Roy Nelson wanted to duke it out with Javy Ayala on the feet. But his coach had other ideas.

“My problem is I had to listen to my coach,” Nelson told MMAjunkie. “I wanted to bang like a mother. Sometimes I want to use the explosion and the bombs.”

Nelson (23-14 MMA, 1-0 BMMA) used a few of those, of course. The majority of them came as he pounded on Ayala (10-6 MMA, 5-3 BMMA) from top position during their three-rounder on the Spike-televised main card of Bellator 183, which took place Saturday at SAP Center in San Jose, Calif.

Rather than slug it out, Nelson fell back on his grappling chops to dominate on the mat. Ayala offered little resistance once on his back.

Even if he wasn’t entirely jazzed with the way the fight played out, Nelson ultimately took home a unanimous-decision victory.

“It was good, but I had to give Bellator some film footage, because the UFC doesn’t license anything out,” Nelson joked.

After some rocky times with the industry-leader, Nelson gets to start anew in a promotion that currently doesn’t boast a heavyweight champion. There aren’t many steps to a potential title shot, and yet Nelson apparently wants to take it slow.

Asked whether he’d like to take on Fedor Emelianenko, whose fans were out in force on Saturday, Nelson shied away.

“I’m going to go back to the gym and talk to (my coach) and see what I did right and what I did wrong,” he said. “I feel like I did a lot wrong, but a ‘W’ is a ‘W.’”

Next time, maybe he’ll let a few more of those bombs go.

To hear more from Nelson, check out the video above.

For complete coverage of Bellator 183, check out the MMA Events section of the site.

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Fight Tracks: The walkout songs of Bellator 183, with an always-welcome nod to 'The Karate Kid'

While it takes intense training, world-class skills and maybe even a bit of luck to register a Bellator win, picking the right song to accompany you to the cage is a key talent, as well.

See what the fighters of Saturday’s Bellator 183 event in San Jose, Calif., went with as their backing tracks.

* * * *

Patricky Freire def. Benson Henderson via split decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28)

Patricky Freire: “Bate Pesadao” by Pegador Luo

Benson Henderson: “Awesome God” by R-Swift

Paul Daley def. Lorenz Larkin via knockout (punches) – Round 2, 2:40

Paul Daley: “Wins And Losses” by Meek Mill

Lorenz Larkin: “This Is Now” by Hatebreed

Roy Nelson def. Javy Ayala via unanimous decision (30-26, 29-28, 29-28)

Roy Nelson: “Born in the USA” by Bruce Springsteen

Javy Ayala: “Congratulations” by Post Malone feat. Quavo

Aaron Pico def. Justin Linn via knockout (punch) – Round 1, 3:45

Aaron Pico: “Nuthin’ But a G’ Thang” by Dr. Dre

Justin Linn: “Puritania” by Dimmu Borgir

Goiti Yamauchi def Adam Piccolotti via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 1, 3:19

Goiti Yamauchi: “You’re The Best Around” by Joe Esposito

Adam Piccolotti: “Can’t Be Touched” by Roy Jones Jr.

For complete coverage of Bellator 183, check out the MMA Events section of the site.

The Blue Corner is MMAjunkie‘s official blog and is edited by Mike Bohn.

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Twitter reacts to Roy Nelson's debut victory over Javy Ayala at Bellator 183

Roy Nelson didn’t get the statement knockout he was looking for his Bellator debut, but he did manage to get a victory over Javy Ayala on Saturday at Bellator 183.

Nelson (22-14 MMA, 1-0 BMMA) put his rarely utilized grappling arsenal on display to overwhelm Ayala (10-6 MMA, 5-3 BMMA) on the mat and take a unanimous decision in the heavyweight bout, which took place at SAP Center in San Jose, Calif., and aired on Spike following prelims streamed on MMAjunkie.

Check out the top Twitter reactions to Nelson’s successful Bellator debut win vs. Ayala at Bellator 183.

* * * *

For complete coverage of Bellator 183, check out the MMA Events section of the site.

Filed under: Bellator, News
Source: MMA Junkie

Bellator 183 results: Roy Nelson falls back on grappling to best Javy Ayala

Veteran heavyweight Roy Nelson got a run for his money against Javy Ayala in his Bellator debut. So he fell back on his grappling to take home the win.

When Nelson (23-14 MMA, 1-0 BMMA) got too much guff from Ayala (10-6 MMA, 5-3 BMMA) on the feet, he nabbed takedowns and dominated on top. The strategy left a lasting impression on scorecards, earning him scores of 30-26, 29-28 and 29-28.

The heavyweight bout aired on Spike as part of the Bellator 183 main card, which took place at SAP Center in San Jose, Calif. Prelims streamed on MMAjunkie.

Nelson admitted no missed steps in victory.

“I had to give him a little up and down to give the fans what they wanted to see,” he said afterward. “The plan was just to get the ‘W’ and show the fans what I still have. Javy put up a great fight, so my hat’s off to him.”

Ayala declined the role of sacrificial lamb, charging from the outset at Nelson, who missed several attempts to land his dreaded overhand right. Ayala showed surprising athleticism in exchanges, firing off jumping knees and superman punches as he took the steam off Nelson’s approach.

As the first round went late, momentum had shifted toward Ayala. But Nelson’s pocket ace revealed itself with a takedown that was hardly contested. Climbing into mount, he set up for punishment. Ayala was able to escape, but a pattern was set.

Nelson went back to the well in the second, taking Ayala down early. Ayala, though, managed to get free and put a front kick in Nelson’s face. Another takedown put Nelson on top, pounding away with punches.

Ayala needed to pull off something big in the final round. But instead, Nelson put him down and dominated, ending the frame with a piston right hand as he sat on top and cruised to the decision win, 30-26, 39-28 and 29-28.

Up-to-the-minute Bellator 183 results include:

  • Roy Nelson def. Javy Ayala via unanimous decision (30-26, 29-28, 29-28)
  • Aaron Pico def. Justin Linn via knockout (punch) – Round 1, 3:45
  • Goiti Yamauchi def. Adam Piccolotti via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 1, 3:19
  • Tony Johnson def. Mike Ortega via knockout (punch) – Round 2, 1:49
  • Kaytlin Neil def. Brooke Mayo via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
  • Brandon Laroco def. Gaston Bolanos via technical submission (triangle choke) – Round 2, 2:16
  • Jaimelene Nievera def. Corina Herrera via unanimous decision (30-26, 29-28, 29-27)
  • Fernando Gonzalez def. Alex Lopez via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
  • Ricardo Vasquez def. Justin Tenedora via submission (guillotine choke) – Round 1, 2:39
  • J.J. Okanovich def. Luis Jauregui via submission (armbar) – Round 1, 0:42
  • Daniel Gonzalez def. Anthony Castrejon via knockout (punches) – Round 1, 4:03

For complete coverage of Bellator 183, check out the MMA Events section of the site.

Filed under: Bellator, Featured
Source: MMA Junkie

Bellator 183 official results and live video stream

SAN JOSE, Calif. – Bellator returns tonight with Bellator 183 from SAP Center, and MMAjunkie is on the scene to bring you live coverage.

Featuring a headlining contest between former UFC and WEC lightweight champion Benson Henderson (24-7 MMA, 1-2 BMMA) and Brazilian slugger Patricky Freire (17-8 MMA, 10-7 BMMA), Bellator 183’s main card airs on Spike following prelims that stream on MMAjunkie.

The main card also features a heated grudge match between Paul Daley (39-15-2 MMA, 5-2 BMMA) and Lorenz Larkin (18-6 MMA, 0-1 BMMA), as well as the promotional debut of former UFC heavyweight Roy Nelson (22-14 MMA, 0-0 BMMA), who takes on Javy Ayala (10-5 MMA, 5-2 BMMA).

You can watch the preliminary live stream above and follow along with the results as they happen below:

MAIN CARD (9 p.m. ET, Spike)

  • Paul Daley vs. Lorenz Larkin
  • Javy Ayala vs. Roy Nelson
  • Adam Piccolotti vs. Goiti Yamauchi
  • Justin Linn vs. Aaron Pico

PRELIMINARY CARD (7 p.m. ET, MMAjunkie)

For more on Bellator 183, check out the MMA Rumors section of the site.

(MMAjunkie’s John Morgan is in San Jose for the event.)

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

5 reasons to watch Bellator 183, a Saturday card with high-stakes matchups

Bellator returns to SAP Center in San Jose, Calif., for Saturday’s Bellator 183 fight card, and the event features some very familiar names.

The main event competitors, Benson Henderson and Patricky Freire have had different experiences at “The Shark Tank” as of late. Henderson dropped his most recent fight there, a split decision to then-lightweight champion Michael Chandler. As for Freie, he knocked out former Strikeforce lightweight champion Josh Thomson in his most recent bout at the arena.

In the co-main event, one of Bellator’s big – in both a figurative and literal sense – signings makes his debut. In that fight, Roy Nelson meets Javy Ayala.

The three other fights on the main card – Paul Daley vs. Lorenz Larkin, Adam Piccolotti vs. Goiti Yamauchi, and Aaron Pico vs. Justin Linn – might not be receiving the same amount of attention as the headlining bouts, but these three matchups have high stakes of their own.

Bellator 183 airs on Spike following prelims on MMAjunkie.

Here are five reasons to watch the event.

1. Post-surgery ‘Bendo’

It turns out Henderson wasn’t fighting at 100 percent during his first three Bellator bouts. In April, Henderson, who is currently No. 12 in the USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie MMA lightweight rankings, told MMAjunkie he’d seriously damaged his knee before his promotional debut, a unanimous decision loss to then-welterweight champion Andrey Koreshkov.

In December, after his decision loss to Chandler, Henderson went under the knife. Henderson said the surgery repaired a torn “ACL, MCL, two meniscus and a bunch of loose cartilage.”

If the surgery did its trick, expect Henderson (24-7 MMA, 1-2 BMMA) to use his speed and motion to work from the outside to pick apart Freire (17-8 MMA, 10-7 BMMA) with powerful kicks. If Henderson’s knee is not up to par and he’s not able to move as well as he did in the past, Freire’s chances of catching Henderson with his powerful hands increase exponentially.

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It’s unlikely that the winner of this fight will earn an immediate shot at the lightweight title. Bellator President Scott Coker told MMAjunkie in June he was leaning more toward a rematch between champion Brent Primus and Chandler.

Freire defeated Josh Thomson by knockout in his most recent fight.

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2. Big signing

After nearly eight years with the UFC, Nelson signed a free-agent deal with Bellator in May. Nelson, who never got a shot at UFC gold, left the promotion with a losing record. Despite that, the vet, with his iron chin and one-punch knockout power, was always one of the more popular UFC heavyweight fighters.

Bellator has been loading up at heavyweight lately. The division now features Matt Mitrione, Cheick Kongo, Sergei Kharitonov, Bobby Lashley, Fedor Emelianenko and Frank Mir. While none of these fighters is a young man, they all do make for an interesting lineup. This is especially true since they’re all jockeying for a shot at a title that has been vacant for more than a year.

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Nelson (22-14 MMA, 0-0 BMMA) begins his pursuit of Bellator gold against Ayala (10-5 MMA, 5-2 BMMA). Ayala enters this fight coming off a stunning one-punch knockout win over Kharitonov at Bellator 163.

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3. Bad blood

Daley and Larkin both have the same goal: to get a crack at welterweight gold. Larkin (18-6 MMA, 0-1 BMMA) lost a unanimous decision to current champion Douglas Lima in his most recent fight, while Daley (39-15-2 MMA, 5-2 BMMA) dropped a decision to Lima in a 2016 title-eliminator.

While a shot at the belt is the longterm goal for these two, the short-term goal is a return to the win column. Like the No. 8 ranked Larkin, Daley enters this fight coming off a second-round submission loss to Rory MacDonald.

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This matchup promises a return to form for Daley and Larkin. Daley has never been a ground fighter; MacDonald exploited that deficiency. Larkin had never participated in a five-round fight before his bout with Lima. That fact might have affected Larkin’s game plan and effectiveness in that bout.

This fight is a three-round affair. Fans should expect these two strikers, who don’t seem to like each other in the least, to get after it early. Between them, Larkin and Daley have 40 knockout victories and just two true knockout losses.

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4. Knocking on the door

Piccolotti passed his first big test inside the Bellator cage when he earned a unanimous-decision win over the more experienced Brandon Girtz in November. At Bellator 183, Piccolotti (9-0 MMA, 5-0 BMMA) faces another opponent with more experience, 23-fight veteran Yamauchi (21-3 MMA, 7-2 BMMA).

Piccolotti, best known for his ground game, showed improved striking in the Girtz fight. Piccolotti used his height and reach advantages to work from the outside, touching Girtz with a good mix of kicks and punches. That striking should come in handy against Yamauchi, who is very dangerous off his back after winning 17 contests via submission. Yamauchi has won his two most recent fights by first-round tap-out.

These two lightweight prospects are inching toward the top of the division. A win in this matchup is likely to earn the victor a shot at a top-five opponent.

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5. Give it a second try

Bellator has handled most of their recent blue-chip signings with kid gloves. The promotion has matched unproven fighters such as Ed Ruth, Tyrell Fortune, Jarod Trice and Joey Davis against opponents equally unproven opponents. For some reason, the promotion didn’t do that with Pico, its most hyped prospect.

In his first pro fight, Pico matched up against 8-2 Zach Freeman. Just 24 seconds into that bout, Pico tapped to a guillotine choke from the former RFA lightweight title challenger.

Pico (0-1 MMA, 0-1 BMMA) drops to featherweight at Bellator 183 to face another much more experienced opponent in Linn (7-3 MMA, 0-0 BMMA). Linn, who turned pro in 2010, enters this fight with losses to former UFC fighter Cody Gibson and current UFC combatant Matthew Lopez in past two outings. Linn has not fought since his April 2016 loss to Gibson.

Pico’s calamitous loss to Freeman puts even more pressure on him for his second fight. If he loses, Pico can expect to hear murmurs and whispers of “he’s a bust” from unforgiving MMA fans. Pico needs to bounce back in a big way against Linn.

For more on Bellator 183, check out the MMA Rumors section of the site.

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Source: MMA Junkie

Bellator 183's Javy Ayala admires Roy Nelson but won't let 'surreal' matchup distract him

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SAN JOSE, Calif. – Bellator heavyweight Javy Ayala didn’t even let his manager finish the offer before he agreed to welcome Roy Nelson to the promotion.

“Growing up, I’ve watched Roy fight since I was younger,” Ayala told MMAjunkie. “He’s one of the reasons that got me into the fight game. It’s kind of surreal that I’m fighting him now.”

Ayala promises he won’t get starstruck when they meet Saturday at SAP Center in San Jose, Calif., for Bellator 183, which airs on Spike. In his previous fight, Ayala was a big fan of Sergei Kharitonov, and that didn’t stop him from landing an overhand right that floored the Russian.

“He’s just another man in front of me,” Ayala said.

But Nelson (21-14 MMA, 0-0 BMMA) is a tough night of work, and he arrives after Ayala (10-5 MMA, 5-2 BMMA) served a long layoff following his upset victory. Given the UFC vet’s name recognition, though, Nelson might be the win that warrants a title shot.

Right now, the No. 1 contender spot is up for grabs. One-time title challenger Cheick Kongo is on a five-fight win streak. Matt Mitrione has won three straight, including a first-round KO of Fedor Emelianenko. And there’s Ayala and Nelson, who could easily step into the spotlight with a win.

Nelson has suggested a heavyweight grand prix to find the rightful champ, an idea that Ayala loves. But, of course, he’s in the same bracket as his hero, so he’ll have to end those dreams on Saturday.

Ayala is the decided underdog coming into the fight, but he’s been here before and proved fans wrong.

“In the beginning, it would get to me with people saying, ‘He’s going to get his butt whooped,’” Ayala said. “But now, I use it to motivate me, and it helps fuel me through workouts.”

Nelson is impossibly durable as a competitor, so it’s unlikely one punch will be the difference. Ayala is prepared to throw as many as necessary.

“I’ve got to tell myself, ‘How bad do you want it, Javy? How bad do want to win this for your family?’ I just tell myself I’ve got to push through it,” he said. “If I’ve got to beat him up for 15 minutes, I’ll beat him up for 15 minutes.”

For more on Bellator 183, check out the MMA Rumors section of the site.

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Source: MMA Junkie

Battle of overhand rights: Roy Nelson vs. Javy Ayala at Bellator 183

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Roy Nelson likely would have faced former PRIDE star Sergei Kharitonov in his Bellator debut.

But the MMA gods laugh at plans.

Javy Ayala was a huge underdog when he stepped into the cage against Kharitonov this past November at Bellator 163. Then he took a page from Nelson’s book, laying out the former PRIDE star with an overhand right.

Now, Ayala (10-5 MMA, 5-2 BMMA) and Nelson (22-14 MMA, 0-0 BMMA) will see whose power punch packs more dynamite when they meet Saturday at Bellator 183, which takes place at SAP Center in San Jose, Calif. The event’s main card airs live on Spike.

Check out a preview of the fight in the above video.

And for more on Bellator 183, check out the MMA Rumors section of the site.

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

Bellator 183 pre-event facts: Roy Nelson moves to Bellator with several UFC records in hand

Bellator’s next major event takes place on Saturday when Bellator 183 goes down at SAP Center in San Jose, Calif., with a Spike-televised main card following prelims streamed on MMAjunkie.

Former UFC lightweight champion Benson Henderson (24-7 MMA, 1-2 BMMA) returns from a knee injury in the event’s headliner, when he faces longstanding Bellator veteran Patricky Freire (17-8 MMA, 10-7 BMMA), who will tie the promotional record for most career fights.

A number of other notable matchups are scheduled for Bellator’s sixth fight card in San Jose. For more on the numbers behind the fights, check below for 30 pre-event facts about Bellator 183.

* * * *

Main event

Benson Henderson and Jorge Masvidal

Henderson has alternated wins and losses over his past four fights.

Henderson is 1-1 since he returned to the lightweight division in August 2016.

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

Freire’s 10 victories in Bellator lightweight competition are second most in divisional history behind Michael Chandler (11).

Freire’s eight stoppage victories in Bellator lightweight competition are second most in divisional history behind Chandler (eight).

Freire’s seven knockout victories in Bellator competition are tied for second most in company history behind Douglas Lima (eight).

Co-main event

Paul Daley

Paul Daley (39-15-2 MMA, 5-2 BMMA) has alternated wins and losses over his past four Bellator appearances.

Daley has earned all 31 of his career stoppage victories as a result of strikes.

Daley has earned four of his five Bellator victories by knockout.

Lorenz Larkin (18-6 MMA, 0-1 BMMA) is 4-2 since he dropped to the welterweight division in January 2015.

Larkin is 5-4 in his past nine fights.

Larkin has earned all of his career stoppage victories by knockout.

Remaining main card

Roy Nelson

Roy Nelson (21-14 MMA, 0-0 BMMA), 41, is the oldest of the 10 fighters scheduled to compete on the main card.

Nelson makes his Bellator debut after a nearly eight-year UFC run where he went 9-10 in 19 promotional appearances.

Nelson’s total fight time of 3:22:33 in UFC heavyweight competition is most in divisional history.

Nelson is 3-7 in his past 10 fights dating back to June 2013.

Nelson is the only fighter in UFC history to record his first seven victories with the organization by knockout.

Nelson’s nine decision losses in UFC heavyweight competition are the most in divisional history and second most overall in company history behind Jeremy Stephens (11).

Nelson has absorbed 985 significant strikes in UFC heavyweight competition, the most in divisional history. Of those 985 strikes, 640 were landed to the head.

Javy Ayala (10-5 MMA, 5-2 BMMA) returns to competition for the first time since Nov. 4, 2016. The 323-day layoff is the longest of his more than six-year career.

Ayala has earned all of his Bellator victories by stoppage. He’s finished four of those wins in Round 1.

Adam Piccolotti

Adam Piccolotti’s (9-0 MMA, 5-0 BMMA) five-fight Bellator winning streak in lightweight competition is the second longest active streak in the division behind Brent Primus (six).

Piccolotti has earned all of his Bellator stoppage victories by submission.

Goiti Yamauchi (21-3 MMA, 7-2 BMMA) is 2-0 since he moved up to the Bellator lightweight division in October. He went 5-2 in the organization at featherweight.

Yamauchi has earned 18 of his 21 career victories by stoppage. That includes six of his seven Bellator victories.

Yamauchi’s five submission victories in Bellator competition are tied for third most in company history behind Marcin Held (six) and Alexandre Bezerra (six).

Aaron Pico

Aaron Pico (0-1 MMA, 0-1 BMMA), 20, is the youngest of the 10 fighters scheduled to compete on the main card.

Pico drops to the featherweight division after losing his pro debut in 24 seconds in a lightweight fight at Bellator NYC in June.

Justin Linn (7-3 MMA, 0-0 BMMA) make his Bellator debut on the first two-fight losing skid of his career. He hasn’t earned a victory since September 2014.

Linn’s past two victories have come by TKO due to leg injuries for his opponents.

For complete coverage of Bellator 183, check out the MMA Events section of the site.

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