Lorenz Larkin vs. Fernando Gonzalez catchweight fight headlines Bellator 193

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Bellator 193’s main event will be an all-California affair.

Officials today announced a headlining fight between Lorenz Larkin (18-7 MMA, 2-1 BMMA) and Fernando Gonzalez (27-14 MMA, 7-1 BMMA), who will meet at a catchweight of 180 pounds.

Bellator 193 takes place Jan. 26 at Pechanga Resort & Casino in Temecula, Calif., and the main card airs on Spike following prelims on Spike.

Larkin, a longtime Bellator and Strikeforce fighter, is still searching for his first UFC win. Since joining the organization earlier this year, he’s suffered a title loss via decision to champ Douglas Lima and a knockout defeat to Paul Daley. Prior to Bellator setbacks, the 31-year-old California native, who’s fought as heavy as light heavyweight before his recent welterweight run, was on a 4-1 run.

He meets Gonzalez, a muay Thai vet who’s on an 8-1 run, though he’s missed weight for his past two bouts (wins over Brandon Girtz and Brennan Ward). The 34-year-old Californian and former WEC and Strikeforce fighter’s only loss during his recent win came via split decision to Michael Page.

Additional Bellator 193 bouts will be announced in the coming weeks.

For more on Bellator 193, check out the MMA Rumors section of the site.

Filed under: Bellator, News
Source: MMA Junkie

Trading Shots: What does it tell us when former UFC fighters struggle in Bellator?


Filed under: Bellator, Featured, News, UFC

Former UFC fighters are finding that the transition to Bellator isn’t always an easy one, so what does that tell us about the true difference in talent between the two promotions? MMAjunkie columnist Ben Fowlkes and retired UFC and WEC fighter Danny Downes discuss.

Fowlkes: Well, Danny, if you were thinking that you’d come out of retirement and cruise through the Bellator ranks, might be time to reconsider that strategy.

On Friday night Gegard Mousasi was the latest former UFC fighter to meet more resistance than expected in Bellator. Unlike Lorenz Larkin and Benson Henderson, he still got the win in the end, but he faced some stiff competition from Alexander Shlemenko, and the evidence was written all over his face by the end.

As the sample size grows, is it time to start asking ourselves whether we’ve been selling the competition short in Bellator? Mousasi left the UFC on a five-fight winning streak. If you put him in a fight with the current UFC middleweight champion, he’s probably the favorite. Yet he still got all he could handle in his first fight with Bellator.

As Bellator CEO Scott Coker loves to point out, people did the same with Strikeforce fighters, downplaying their skills because they weren’t in the UFC. But several of them became champs once they finally made the jump to the UFC. Are we making the same mistake all over again with Bellator as the lesser-known MMA organization? If so, will we ever stop making that particular blunder?

Downes: Welcome to the club, Ben! Those of us who actually watch the sport of MMA instead of being a Zuffa Zombie (although I guess now they’re the Endeavor Eunuchs) have known about Bellator for some time. Especially considering the way the UFC roster has ballooned the last couple years, the talent gap outside the top five has drastically narrowed.

We should be asking ourselves if we’ve been selling the competition short, but I wouldn’t count on too many others joining the fold any time soon. The UFC bias is too strong. In Mousasi’s case, despite the fact that he’s competed in every MMA organization you can think of, people will think of him as an “also ran,” like he couldn’t hack it in the UFC.

The same holds true for Phil Davis and Ryan Bader. Even Eddie Alvarez, who became UFC champion after a successful career in Bellator, doesn’t get the credit he deserves. He lost his UFC debut to Donald Cerrone, therefore Bellator is the minor leagues!

Part of it is also Bellator’s own doing. In an effort to deliver some name brand fighters, the “legends tour” moniker can seem too familiar. We all love a good “freak show” fight, but even then Bellator is held to a different standard. If Royce Gracie vs. Ken Shamrock III happens inside a Rizin ring instead of a Bellator cage, I think the feelings and expectations are much different.

We often talk about how the number of UFC events can make fans feel less inclined to watch. This has ramifications outside the UFC. Even though Bellator and the UFC rarely go head to head, there’s only so much MMA you can consume. Even the hardcore fans have to go to work and occasionally bathe. Who has time for another MMA promotion?

The boom period of MMA is over. Isn’t it too late to catch up to the UFC now? If not, how do they gain ground?

Fowlkes: First of all, props for being the hip guy who knew Bellator was good before it was cool. Second, how do you catch the UFC from behind? Maybe you have to meet it halfway.

Bellator has been slowly gaining ground on the UFC, both through its own talent acquisitions and the UFC’s missteps, but there’s still a ways to go. What I wonder is whether it helps that cause to see former UFC fighters struggle in the Bellator cage.

On one hand, you paid good money to lure these fighters away, so you want to make your investment back. You want them to be the successful stars you thought you were paying for, right?

On the other hand, if they come over and get roughed up by existing Bellator fighters, it prompts the kind of conversation we’re having now.

Or maybe it doesn’t. Maybe some people see it as proof that the UFC was right to let that guy go. Maybe they don’t even notice, because Bellator just draws so much less attention to begin with.

Or maybe this conversation about quality of fighters isn’t one that most fans are truly interested in anymore. We used to love that argument when it was PRIDE vs. UFC. We loved it slightly less when it was Strikeforce vs. UFC. But could it be that the UFC brand name is so solidified at this point that a certain segment of the fan base doesn’t even care if it’s where the best fighters are?

That’d be a little depressing, now that I think about it. But does that mean it’s not true?

Downes: I take it back. We don’t want you in our club anymore. I bet you’d probably never pay your dues.

There is something to the thought that the UFC is so ingrained as the face of MMA that it would be hard to catch it (there’s something to it because I said the exact same thing earlier, and you repackaged it as your own thought). People like to make fun of the “I train UFC” crowd, but there’s something to the joke. The term MMA may have more traction now than ever, but there are still a huge number of fans who think UFC = MMA.

Part of that has to do with the role of media. Dana White may talk about Bellator’s Viacom money, but the UFC has a lock on content. In mainstream outlets like ESPN or FS1, the UFC is the MMA content.

This brings us to a chicken or the egg argument. The UFC receives the most coverage because that’s what fans want. But how much of that has to do with what we give them?

Can you name three Bellator champs? How many fighters on the Bellator roster can you list? Is Alexander Griboyedov a current heavyweight or a 19th century Russian playwright? Certainly the failure to answer those questions isn’t the media’s fault, but we have to wonder if fans will ever be willing (or able) to make up that lost ground in the information battle.

Having good fights isn’t enough. What that extra piece of the puzzle is, I don’t know. I do know that there are only so many hours in a day, so many articles a website can write, and so much time an MMA fan can commit. Maybe fans will start to commit more of that time to Bellator. But maybe they’ll find something else to do. If they do that, it won’t just be bad for Coker – it’ll be bad for everyone.

Ben Fowlkes is MMAjunkie and USA TODAY’s MMA columnist. Danny Downes, a retired UFC and WEC fighter, is an MMAjunkie contributor who has also written for UFC.com and UFC 360. Follow them on twitter at @benfowlkesMMA and @dannyboydownes.

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

Twitter Mailbag: Why are we talking about McGregor-Diaz III like it's a done deal? There's a reason

In this week’s Twitter Mailbag, are we really all-in for McGregor-Diaz III, or are we just desperate for a big fight to look forward to? Also, what happens if GSP becomes UFC middleweight champ? And is it better for fighters to be deep thinkers or non-thinkers?

All that and more in this week’s Twitter Mailbag. To ask a question of your own, tweet to @BenFowlkesMMA.

* * * *

Want to know how easily manipulated the MMA media news cycle is these days, now that there’s not much going on and very little of immediate interest to discuss? All it takes is for Conor McGregor’s longtime coach John Kavanagh to throw a coin in the wishing well with a date and location attached, and suddenly we’re all talking about this Nate Diaz fight in March like it’s practically a done deal.

It’s not. That’s just fantasy matchmaking, and Kavanagh’s the first to admit that he has almost no power to make it happen. But we’re desperate. What else are we supposed to get excited about, interim title fights and the UFC’s debut in Gdansk, Poland? It’s tough out there, and we’ll take any port in a storm.

Yes I do, barely, but does it even matter? The sole reason to do this fight again (instead of, say, an actual UFC lightweight title fight against an actual lightweight contender, of which there are several) would because it would likely make a bunch of money. That’s the hope, anyway. And that hope is based on the pay-per-view numbers from the first two fights, which combined to give the UFC a monster financial year in 2016.

As you may have noticed, 2017 is not shaping up to be quite as monstrous on PPV. The new UFC owners paid a fortune for this thing, and now there’s debt to be paid but precious few superstars to bring in the kind of money that might help pay it. In times like these, no one in the position to make decisions at the UFC cares about the scorecards in McGregor-Diaz II.

Brother, if we can convince the MMA gods to accept Paige VanZant vs. Jessica Eye in return for keeping their malicious mitts off Francis Ngannou vs. Alistair Overeem, let’s just say we’ll have made one excellent trade.

That said, I have to favor Ngannou in this fight. He’s a big, young, athletic guy who hits hard and with plenty of confidence. Overeem has looked a little chinny in recent years, and when people get in his face and stay there he sometimes struggles. I don’t see him taking Ngannou down and beating him there. If he can’t keep Ngannou at kicking range, trouble abounds for “The Reem.”

Then again, these are heavyweights we’re talking about here. I’d sooner bet on a literal coin flip.

Chaos. Mass hysteria. Dogs and cats living together. You know, the usual.

First of all, I think it’s unlikely that Georges St-Pierre beats Michael Bisping. He’s just been out of action so long, and his style isn’t well-suited to beating a bigger man with good cardio and high work rate, who also happens to be a pretty sound defensive wrestler.

But GSP is still GSP, and Bisping is an aging middleweight with plenty of miles on the odometer, so it’s not unthinkable for St-Pierre to become the new UFC middleweight champ.

What happens then, you ask? One thing I don’t see St-Pierre doing is turning right around and defending his belt against Robert Whittaker. I think it’s more likely he looks around for another money fight (maybe against someone whose name rhymes with Bonor McEgger…) outside the division. Maybe he even decides that he’s proven what he had to prove and made the money he came back to make, so he returns to the solace of retirement.

Where would that leave the middleweight division? More or less where it is now, with everyone feeling pretty certain that “Bobby Knuckles” is the man to beat.

You’re asking the wrong question. It’s not a matter of smart vs. dumb, in part because there’s all different kinds of smart, just like there’s all different kinds of dumb. The real mental difference between fighters, according to my observations, is thoughtful vs. not thoughtful.

What I mean by that is, some fighters are very self-aware and introspective and honest with themselves. Others are very not. And while one hates to generalize, yeah, there does seem to be a difference in success rate, and it often favors the less thoughtful fighters – up to a point.

Take somebody like Uriah Hall, for instance. He’s been open about his struggles to get out of his own head at times, which is a problem that most of us would have if our jobs were entirely dependent on one brief physical performance every few months. An introspective person could drive themselves crazy in this business.

But then you have other fighters who rarely seem to struggle with doubt, as if their success is somehow preordained. They are confident almost to the point of being delusional. They don’t even think about all the negative “what if” questions, and it’s not because they’re intentionally avoiding them. Those possibilities just don’t occur to them, because they can only think one way about this stuff.

Greg Jackson likes to say that fighters have to be optimists. You can see his point, because if you get too honest with yourself about this sport and all the ways it can go, you probably wouldn’t ever set foot in the cage.

The problem is, those who manage to stay out of their own heads often have trouble being honest with themselves when they need to be. They can’t or won’t perform necessary risk-versus-reward calculations. They just go. Even when they should stop.

We’re not quite there yet, but such a test might soon be a reality. (You can read more about that here.)  If and when that does happen, it could change how we think about violent sports, but I suspect it will have a much greater impact on football than on MMA.

Think about it: Football is an extracurricular activity in America. It’s a game. We grow up playing it in school, as kids, which feeds our fandom as adults. If we become so collectively horrified at the consequences of it that we stop supporting it as this vast American institution, it can’t help but harm the future of the sport and leagues like the NFL.

Fighting, on the other hand? It doesn’t have so far to fall. It’s always been looked at as this brutal fringe of sports culture. You can still put kids in helmets and shoulder pads, but if you throw them in a cage to punch each other you’re likely to be branded a madman.

Most parents already don’t want their kids to take up full-contact mixed martial arts fighting. They don’t view it as an after-school activity. You don’t get a college scholarship that way; you break bones and lose teeth.

If people find out that tackle football is inherently bad for brain health, they might rethink a giant piece of American culture. If they find out the same about fighting, they might just see it as confirmation of what they already suspected.

But if he retires, how is Nick Diaz going to rematch both Anderson Silva and Takanori Gomi in the same night of some insane Rizin FF tournament on New Year’s Eve 2019? Dammit, man. You’ve got to think this stuff through.

I doubt it, because what do Benson Henderson’s and Lorenz Larkin’s losses really tell us? What, that Bellator fighters aren’t pushovers? Seems like that should be obvious to pro fighters who are capable of looking past the brand name and recognizing skill when they see it.

Also, if your main consideration is finding the easiest fights possible, that’s not a great argument for sticking with the UFC, where the talent pool is deeper in just about every division. Free agency is about money, and sometimes also respect and freedom. You don’t make it far enough to be in that conversation if you’re only interested in easy fights.

Henderson is definitely a good fighter, but at this point he’s pretty set in his ways. When he’s getting beat up, you’ll see him pull off (or at least attempt) some fun stuff. When he thinks he’s winning, however, he gets a lot more risk-averse.

The result is that, when it’s close, he tends to feel like he’s already winning. He fights like he doesn’t want to screw around and lose, rather than fighting like he wants to make absolutely certain that he wins.

If there’s any good news, is that at this point he has more to gain than lose by going out there and taking some risks. It’s just a question of whether can really just his approach this far into his career.

First of all, thank you for illustrating what a bad idea the expanded Twitter character count is. I think we can all look at the terrifying example you have provided and conclude that this is not a world we want to live in. So, um, good work?

Second, Rashad Evans is far from the first fighter to ever feel this way. It’s the dilemma of the former champion in decline. He doesn’t want to quit on a loss, but a win would only convince him that he can still do it.

And sure, there are light heavyweights he could beat. There’s probably easier prey at the bottom of that division than there is at middleweight. But is that really what would make this easier for him, just hunting around for a warm body he could beat, for the sole purpose of having a W next to his name at the very end of his career? I suspect that it wouldn’t give him the peace he’s looking for, but I don’t expect that to stop him now.

Ben Fowlkes is MMAjunkie and USA TODAY’s MMA columnist. Follow him on Twitter at @BenFowlkesMMA. Twitter Mailbag appears every Thursday on MMAjunkie.

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

Lorenz Larkin congratulates Paul Daley for Bellator 183 KO, but wants rematch

Lorenz Larkin is not throwing himself a pity party after his knockout loss to Paul Daley at Bellator 183 this past Saturday, but he does want a second chance.

Larkin (18-7 MMA, 0-2 BMMA), who made no secret of his disdain for Daley (40-15-2 MMA, 6-2 UFC) ahead of their welterweight bout at SAP Center in San Jose, Calif., encountered another setback early in his Bellator run when he succumbed to a second-round knockout loss at the hands of “Semtex.”

When two strikers the caliber of Larkin and Daley opt to trade blows, it’s a roll of the dice over who could go down first. At Bellator 183 it was Larkin, and while disappointing to lose a fight to someone he dislikes so much, “The Monsoon” is taking it in stride (via Instagram):

Instagram Photo

Hey you win some and lose some and in this sport you can be on top of the world one minute and feel like a piece of shit the next but hey thats the fight game hat’s off to Daley hopefully you will let me run it back in the future

Regardless of Larkin’s positive attitude, it’s obvious his Bellator run has been less than ideal so far. After falling short of the welterweight title against Douglas Lima in his debut at Bellator NYC in June, Larkin came back for the bout with Daley, which did not go his way, either.

The outcome marked just the second time in Larkin’s career that he’s been stopped with strikes. And while he knows it’s unlikely for the immediate future, he hopes for the chance to eventually redeem himself in a rematch with Daley.

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

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Filed under: Bellator, News
Source: MMA Junkie

Bellator 183 winner Paul Daley made peace with Lorenz Larkin following KO


Filed under: Bellator, Featured, News, Videos

SAN JOSE, Calif. – Paul Daley on Saturday proved he’s still one of the best welterweights in the world when he demolished Lorenz Larkin for a second-round knockout in the Bellator 183 co-main event.

After losing a lopsided fight to Rory MacDonald earlier this year, Daley (40-15-2 MMA, 6-2 BMMA) bounced back with a stellar performance against former Bellator title challenger Larkin (18-8 MMA, 0-2 BMMA), finishing the fight with yet another highlight knockout for his lengthy sizzle-reel.

Daley’s victory, which co-headlined the Spike-televised card at SAP Center in San Jose, Calif., following prelims streamed on MMAjunkie, was easily the most significant of his Bellator career, but it certainly wasn’t surprising to him.

“People, they just underestimate the power so much,” Daley told MMAjunkie after his win. “I don’t understand why. I’ve got 40 wins and 35 knockouts. Why would you want to stand and trade with me? It’s ridiculous. But I got the win. I’m happy, and I’m looking on to the future now, getting into title contention, big names, big fights and more money.

“Every time I get a knockout I feel fantastic. Winning definitely beats losing. The last time I lost against Rory MacDonald, so, it’s fantastic. Lorenz, he was just in my changing room, he’s genuinely a nice guy. He said I got under his skin a bit, and he just wasn’t used to the whole trash-talking thing. He’s a top name. He’s beaten former UFC champions. He’s beaten some top guys. For me, it’s a massive, massive win.”

Daley’s patented left hook was certainly the most significant contributor to his win, but apparently the mental warfare prior to the contest was meaningful, as well. The Brit talked a big game ahead of Bellator 183, as he normally does before his fights, and Larkin was admittedly irked by it.

That tension spilled over to the ceremonial weigh-ins a day prior to the event, when Larkin decided to push Daley and engage in a scuffle during the staredown. Daley said the weigh-in antics somewhat got to him, but apparently not as much as Larkin, who “Semtex” had a peace-making moment with backstage after the fight.

“He came back to the changing rooms, and we spoke a little bit,” Daley revealed. “He’s a cool guy. I don’t know why everyone gets so wound up. They know what (expletive) I’m going to do; I do it every time. I talk a bit of (expletive). I wind them up at the press conference or whatever. He just bit.”

Daley’s win kept his position as one of the top 170-pound contenders in Bellator. At 34, he has said he only has a few years of fighting left, and he wants to use that time participating in the biggest fights possible.

A matchup that’s been brewing with great fan interest is against his countryman Michael Page (12-0 MMA, 8-0 BMMA). There appears to be a genuine disdain between the two competitors, and Daley said it’s just a matter of time until they share the cage, even if he doesn’t see “MVP” as being on his level.

“‘MVP’s’ been talking, but with this win, I think I’ve leapt over that kind of fight,” Daley said. “But I’m open to the fight, because it’s a big fight. I’m just looking for the money and waiting for the title shot. Standup fighters like ‘MVP,’ they can’t beat me. They don’t understand I just have to touch them once, and then it’s lights out. So, it’s whatever. Whatever happens.”

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

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

Bellator 183 video highlights: Freire edges Henderson, Daley and Pico deliver big


Filed under: Bellator, Featured Videos, News, Videos

Saturday’s Bellator 183 event was heavy on talent, and the card delivered on entertainment value.

Bellator 183 took place at SAP Center in San Jose, Calif. The main card aired on Spike following prelims on MMAjunkie.

In the night’s main event, Patricky Freire (18-8 MMA, 11-7 BMMA) handed former UFC lightweight champion Benson Henderson (24-8 MMA, 1-3 BMMA) his second straight split-decision loss.

In the night’s co-feature, hard-hitting Paul Daley (40-15-2 MMA, 6-2 BMMA) ended his rivalry with Lorenz Larkin (18-7 MMA, 0-2 BMMA) in impressive fashion, catching the fellow striker with a big left hand. However, it was top prospect Aaron Pico (1-1 MMA, 1-1 BMMA) who may have delivered the most memorable moment of the night, scoring a crushing knockout of Justin Linn (7-4 MMA, 0-1 BMMA).

Check out the video above to see highlights of all the action.

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

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

Twitter reacts to Paul Daley's wild knockout of Lorenz Larkin at Bellator 183


Filed under: Bellator, News

Paul Daley claimed he wasn’t worried about anything Lorenz Larkin offered in their fight, and ultimately he backed up his words with a victory in Saturday’s Bellator 183 co-main event.

Daley (40-15-2 MMA, 6-2 BMMA) talked a big game prior to his welterweight encounter with Larkin (18-7 MMA, 0-2 BMMA). It paid off, because “Semtex” earned a second-round knockout victory in the Spike-televised co-headliner at SAP Center in San Jose, Calif., to put himself back in the mix of 170-pound contenders.

Check out the top Twitter reactions to Daley’s victory over Larkin at Bellator 183.

* * * *

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

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Filed under: Bellator, News
Source: MMA Junkie

Bellator 183 results: Paul Daley lays out Lorenz Larkin


Filed under: Bellator, Featured, News

An inventive combination served as the last word in Paul Daley’s rivalry with Lorenz Larkin.

Daley (40-15-2 MMA, 6-2 BMMA) got Larkin (18-7 MMA, 0-2 BMMA) to duck on a spinning backfist and then nailed him with a pair of left hands to earn a TKO at the 2:40 mark of the second frame.

The welterweight 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.

Afterward, Daley called out another rival, striking sensation Michael “Venom” Page.

“A little young boy called ‘MVP’ that’s been talking,” Daley said. “Get that little punk in here with me. He’s getting knocked out, as well.”

Like that bad blood, Daley and Larkin came into the fight looking to settle a score after trading barbs in the press. They nearly got into it at Friday’s ceremonial weigh-ins.

But Daley’s finish came after a tough opening round. As he tried to keep distance with kicks, Larkin made his mark by sneaking in punches as the British striker retreated.

A slip from Daley put Larkin on top late in the frame, and he closed out the round after shrugging off a rare submission attempt from his rival.

When Daley tried to get revenge early in the second, he found himself stuffed against the cage. Larkin then easily stuffed a rare takedown attempt from Daley and appeared to be setting up for something big.

But instead, he found himself the victim of a Daley combination that added another clip to the highlight reel.

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

  • Paul Daley def. Lorenz Larkin via TKO (punches) – Round 2, 2:40
  • Roy Nelson def. Jay 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.

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

Chaos erupts between Lorenz Larkin, Paul Daley at Bellator 183 weigh-ins


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SAN JOSE, Calif. – Lorenz Larkin has made no secret about his disdain for Paul Daley in the lead-up to their welterweight clash at Bellator 183 on Saturday. Today’s ceremonial weigh-ins for the event provided the clearest example.

In their first and last face-to-face meeting ahead of the event, which takes place at SAP Center in San Jose, Calif., and airs on Spike following prelims on MMAjunkie, Larkin got heated and pushed Daley after “Semtex” got in his face.

Daley (39-15-2 MMA, 5-2 BMMA), who is no stranger to being involved with antics outside the cage, replied in kind, going after Larkin (18-6 MMA, 0-1 BMMA). The fighters continued to pursue each other, but fortunately there was enough Bellator staff present on stage that the situation was diffused before getting completely out of hand.

The beef going into the fight is relatively one-sided, with Larkin claiming he dislikes Daley so much that simply talking about him takes “months off my life.”

Daley, however, laughs off the whole thing.

“The fact it’s getting so heated up is just comical,” he told MMAjunkie. “But I hope he brings that same intensity into the ring.”

Watch the complete weigh-in video above or below to hear what was said on stage.

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

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

Bellator 183's Paul Daley: Only Nick Diaz and Douglas Lima were men of their word


Filed under: Bellator, News, Videos

SAN JOSE, Calif. – A lot of fighters talk a big game, but Paul Daley said only Nick Diaz and Douglas Lima walked the walk after talking the talk.

Big-show vet Daley (39-15-2 MMA, 5-2 BMMA) meets former UFC fighter and recent Bellator arrival Lorenz Larkin (18-6 MMA, 0-1 BMMA) on Saturday at Bellator 183.

The welterweight fight, which airs on Spike from SAP Center in San Jose, Calif., has already created some fireworks. They’ve been out of the cage, though, as Larkin has spoken openly and often about his disdain for Daley’s perceived insincere trash-talk.

But Daley?

“The fact it’s getting so heated up is just comical,” he told MMAjunkie. “But I hope he brings that same intensity into the ring.”

After all, Daley, a 33-year-old vet with 29 knockouts in 39 career wins, has faced many opponents who promised to stand and bag with the British slugger – only look to look for a reprieve once they got rattled.

There have been a few exceptions, Daley said.

“I think there are two people in my career … who felt the heat and stayed on their feet and not attempted to clinch or go for a takedown, and that’s Douglas Lima and Nick Diaz,” he said. “That’s the only two guys in over 53 fights.”

Lima picked up a unanimous-decision win over Daley in July 2016, and Diaz scored a TKO win over Daly at a 2011 Strikeforce event. They’re not Daley’s only career losses, but he said those two past opponents really stand out.

“Those are the only two guys I’ve hit and stayed up, and they haven’t tried to take me down or play a different game, and they kept coming after it,” Daley said. “I just hope Lorenz does too.”

Check out the full interview as Daley breaks down the matchup, talks about his potential retirement, what he wants his legacy to be, and whether a fight with rival Michael Page ever happens.

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

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