Another Friday, another night of Bellator action, this time featuring the heavyweight division where Cheick Kongo made his promotional debut against Mark Godbeer and Lavar Johnson made his debut against Vinicius Quieroz in the opening round of the heavyweight tournament. The night saw a lot of action with some great knockouts, subs, and punching/kicking/grappling aplenty. Check out all the action as I recap the night's fights with the help of our own Zombie Prophet.
Heavyweight Bout: Brandon Cash def. William Richey via TKO (retirement) at 10:00 of Round 2.
Cash came out swinging hard to start the first round, tagged Richey and took him down. After a minute Cash let Richey back up, took a hard body kick, but really started tagging Richey hard. Cash spent a lot of energy and started to gas in the second half of the first but kept Richey on his back foot for most of the round. The two ended the round trading uppercuts in the clinch.
The two heavies started the second round exchanging, with Cash once again not doing a ton of damage but landing a lot more offense. Cash grabbed the TD of a kick about a minute in, Richey rolled for a kneebar but got nothing out of it. Cash stood and dived to land strikes, but got caught in a triangle which went nowhere. The ref was forced to stand the fight from half guard but they were both too gassed to get up. Cash grabbed another takedown to end the round. Richey quit on the stool at the end of round 2.
Lightweight Bout: Cain Carrizosa def. Juan Quesada via Submission (triangle) at 4:51 of Round 2
Carrizosa started the fight strong with a barrage of punches, but Quesada pushed him into the cage and got the double. Carrizosa went for a triangle, but Quesada stood out of it and came back down in half guard. Carrizosa regained guard and hit a really nice armbar transition. Quesada stacked him and Carrizosa gave it up. Quesada rode out the rest of the round on top in half guard.
Carrizosa started round two with some wild striking. Quesada didn't have much answer and struggled to find distance or get takedowns. Eventually Carrizosa hit him with a barrage of strikes and tried to finish, but Quesada grabbed a desperation single and torqued him down. Quesada spent a couple minutes in inefficient GNP from half guard before Carrizosa regained full guard. Quesada got lazy and Carrizosa slapped on a nice triangle, transitioned to armbar, then back to triangle for the tapout.
Catchweight (165 lb) Bout: Stephen Martinez def. Bryan Travers via Technical Sub (Guillotine) at 0:56 of Round 1.
The fighters hooked up in the clinch, Martinez tried for a guillotine pulled guard, and Travers went to sleep immediately. Eerily it took about 10 seconds for anyone to realize he was out.
Lightweight Bout: Brandon Girtz def. Poppies Martinez via Sub (armbar) at 1:20 of Round 1
Girtz tagged Martinez hard early and often. Finally he nailed Martinez and dropped him. Martinez rolled for the Kimura, but Girtz grabbed the armbar instead for the quick finish.
Heavyweight Bout: Javy Ayala def. Thiago Santos via KO (punches) at 5:00 of Round 1.
Ayala looked to keep Santos at range early, but Santos showed him no respect, wading in with big wide shots. Ayala tried a jumping knee, the two separated and Ayala charged in and got hurt but hurt Santos at the same time. After a bit more circling Ayala went for a head kick and Santos took him down and sat on north south position. Ayala stood out as Santos had no body control. Santos started to open up his offense and hurt Ayala badly, who ducked out and causing Santos to put his hands down and walk casually across the cage towards him. Right at the buzzer Ayala caught Santos hard, followed up with five more shots, and Santos went out face first as the bell rung.
Featherweight Bout: Scott Cleve def. Isaac DeJesus via TKO (punches) at 3:14 of Round 2.
Cleve started the fight with a strong single-leg takedown into side control. DeJesus hit a nice sweep though and got top control for some good GNP. Cleve hit a butterfly sweep of his own to get half guard, but DeJesus was able to find enough room to escape back to his feet. Cleve kept DeJesus in tight and was able to throw him back down into side control to ride out the round.
In the second Cleve shot in early again for a takedown into side control. He transitioned nicely to mount, but DeJesus was able to roll out briefly. Cleve stayed on him though and got him back to the ground and into the mount where was able to stay on DeJesus and pound him out from back mount.
Middleweight Tournament Bout: Brennan Ward def. Joe Pacheco via Sub (guillotine) at 2:41 of Round 2.
The two fighters traded at range a bit to start with Ward landing some hard shots. Eventually they hooked up against the cage and after a minute of grinding Pacheco hit a big slam takedown into side control. He used a keylock attempt to get mount and landed some GNP to finish the round.
In the second Pacheco went in for a shot and got stuffed. Ward landed some hard shots to the body, brought Pacheco up and hit a knee on the exit. Pacheco tried to get another slam, but ended up on bottom where ward landed a few hard shots and went after back control before letting Pacheco back to his feet. Pacheco dived in for another takedown, Ward sprawled out, but Pacheco left his head in and got caught in a power guillotine that left him out cold.
Big slam from Pacheco:
The front choke finish:
Middleweight Tournament Bout: Mikkel Parlo def. Jason Butcher via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)
Parlo started strong keeping Butcher at range and popping him with small punches. Butcher tried to drag him down a couple times but wasn't able to. As the round wore on Butcher started trying to pull guard and Parlo started to light him up. Late in the round Butcher got depserate and started getting aggressive in his striking. Surprisingly it started to work and he popped Parlo with some hard shots late.
Butcher looked to abandon his Jiu Jitsu early in the second and trade flurrys with Parlo. As the round went on and Butcher started getting hurt he pulled guard more often. He shot for a couple takedowns, half-heartedly, but didn't get them. Late in the round Parlo really started turning it up and hurt Butcher on several occasions. The ref almost stepped in and stopped it and probably kept Parlo from finishing it by trying to step in.
In the third Butcher was far too tired and hurt to mount meaningful offense. Parlo tagged him with two or three hard shots and he flopped to the ground exhausted. This repeated for the rest of the round including Parlo dropping Butcher several times. Terrible showing from Butcher.
Bantamweight Tournament Final: Rafael Silva def. Anthony Leone via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
The fighters felt each other out for the first minute or so of the fight. Silva hit a double thatgot Leone to the mat. Leone scrambled, but almost gave up the sub, Leone spun out and gave up another takedown, throwing up a triangle in the process. He tried to explode back to his feet, but Silva took his back. Leone shook him off and shot for a failed single, driving Silva into the cage until time expired.
In the second Leone and Silva traded tentatively at range with Leone landing overhand rights and Silva trying but failing at a neat capoeira kick. Silva got tired of getting hit and shot in for a sloppy takedown, but ended up getting it. He spent the rest of the round in back control hunting for the rear naked choke.
Heavyweight Tournament Bout: Vinicius Quieroz def. Lavar Johnson via KO (punch) at of Round 1.
Quieroz started by circling to Johnson's left. Johnson tried a lunging left jab and Quieroz landed a big right over the top sending Lavar face down into the canvas.
Heavyweight Tournament Bout: Cheick Kongo def. Mark Godbeer via TKO (knees) at 2:04 of Round 2
Godbeer tried to make it a messy fight early, but Kongo got the body lock and drug him down. Godbeer made it back to his feet, but Kongo was in full wall and stall mode. McCarthy broke them up after Godbeer landed a low blow and Kongo took a minute or so to recover. Kongo got the fight back into the clinch and eventually drug Godbeer back down. Godbeer returned to his feet and back to wall and stall. McCarthy separated them and Kongo drove him back to the fence. Rinse and repeat to finish the round.
In the second Kongo went back to his clinch and stall tactics. Godbeer tried to find an answer, despite being physically outmatched. His attempts to create space opened up more strikes and Kongo delivered a powerful series of knees to the head against the cage to finish the fight.
That's all the action from Bellator 102, be sure to stay tuned to Bloody Elbow for more fight results, recaps, technical breakdowns, and announcements.