A new welterweight champion will be crowned in the main event of tonight's Bellator 117 event from the Mid-America Center in Council Bluffs, Iowa. Douglas Lima battles Rick Hawn for the vacant welterweight title and two watch-worthy semifinal bouts in the Season 10 Lightweight Tournament will transpire in Derek Campos vs. Patricky Freire and Derek Anderson vs. Marcin Held. Opening up the Spike TV broadcast is the return of French mauler Karl Amoussou, who draws newcomer Derek Gomez in a middleweight feature fight.
The main card begins at 9:00 p.m. ET on Spike TV while the preliminary card will stream live and free on Bloody Elbow and Spike.com with an approximate start time of 6:45 p.m. ET, with overly detailed and verbose play by play courtesy of yours truly.
Bellator 117: Lima vs. Hawn (Spike TV at 9:00 p.m. ET)
Round 1 - They touch gloves and Lima virtually dwarfs Hawn. Hawn darts in with a quick left and circles away from Lima's controlled stalking. Hawn checks an outside low kick from Lima. A lot of movement by Hawn here. Hawn tries to counter Lima's next low kick with a step-in right. The crowd is already booing less than two minutes in. Because they're stupid. Double jab from Hawn. Front kick from Lima before Hawn circles out of a corner.
Hard right lands for Hawn though Lima got a glove in front of it. Lima cracks home an outside low kick and Hawn steps gingerly after it lands. Lima lands another and Hawn goes down from it. Lima backs off and Hawn is forced to stand. His movement looks OK; at least not seriously compromised. But another scorching leg kick upends him again and Lima even lands a knee before he's fully down. Hawn covers up in desperation mode and Lima tees off, but he can't finish before the bell. 10-8 Lima for disabling Hawn's leg and the near finish.
Round 2 - Lima walks Hawn down and chops at his lead leg with another low kick. Lima lands another as Hawn's coming in and Hawn goes down again. Lima backs off and Hawn noticeably limps on his first few steps. The next low kick cans Hawn again, and he backs off to let him up again. Now Lima lands a linear kick to Hawn's knee. Hawn, showing huge heart, blitzes in with a body shot and a left hook. Lima destroys the leg with another kick and Hawn goes down again.
Lima now fakes the low kick to bring a big one high but Hawn blocks it. Lima massacres him with another low kick and long-term health and the ability to walk begin to become a big concern. Right on cue, Hawn's corner signals their surrender to referee Rob Hinds and the fight is stopped. Douglas Lima gets another finish en route to becoming the Bellator Welterweight Champion.
- Douglas Lima defeats Rick Hawn by TKO (corner stoppage), Round 2
Derek Anderson vs. Marcin Held -- Lightweight Tournament Semifinal
Round 1 - Anderson wings a heavy overhand right almost downward at Held from his towering vantage point. Held unbolts a quick combo and circles out of Anderson's wheelhouse. Held flashes more strikes and changes levels, surprisingly penetrating deeply and taking the bigger man down. Held triangles his legs in half guard and then passes to side mount, landing some left knees to the body. Anderson regains half guard and tries to cage walk but Held pulls him back down and falls back to attack a leg.
Held starts working on a heel hook but Anderson sits forward and keeps some leather in his face to disrupt the submission attempt. Anderson continues to punch his way out while leaning back to alleviate the pressure in spurts, and eventually pulls his leg out and gets in Held's guard. Like lightning, Held is on his leg again and stretching it out. This time he bails on the sub to take top position with less than a minute left, a wise decision from a scoring standpoint. Held falls back for another leg lock before the round ends but eats some solid right hands in the last few seconds. 10-9 Held for consistently putting himself in fight-finishing position.
Round 2 - Anderson is a little more cautious to start the second and it allows him to see Held's takedown attempt and sprawl on it easily. Anderson changes levels to bang a big right off Held's ribs. Held connects and Anderson either slips or is wobbled by it. Held using his speed to compensate for Anderson's length with blinding bursts of punches. Stiff jab from Anderson, followed by a sharp right. Double jab from Held, who slips on the canvas after and tries to bait Anderson into joining him on the canvas
Anderson isn't into it and Held is stood up. He dives after a single leg and uses it to pull guard, immediately slinging a leg over the shoulder into triangle position. Held cleverly adjusts his feet and steers Anderson's head into the jaws of his triangle and wrenches it, eliciting the tapout shortly after.
- Marcin Held defeats Derek Anderson by submission (triangle choke), Round 2
Karl Amoussou vs. David Gomez -- Welterweight Feature Fight
Round 1 - Amoussou opens with double lefts but Gomez holds his ground with a straight right. Heel stomp to the knee from Amoussou. Gomez cracks off a technically sound three-punch combo that whiffs and checks a low kick, showing solid fundamentals. Amoussou forced to be a little more calculating due to Gomez's tight power shots. Gomez catches Amoussou with something low but Amoussou is ready to keep going before Big Dan Miragliotta even steps in to check.
Amoussou gets caught reaching out for the clinch after a charging combo and eats a monster right hand that stuns him. He engages more cautiously from outside with low kicks that Gomez checks and somewhat hesitant bursts of punches. Gomez plugs Amoussou with a heavy lead left and it snaps his head back; Amoussou rubs his eye and looks at the ref, apparently catching something in the eyeball. Miragliotta sees it clean (which it was) and they fight on. 10-9 Gomez.
Round 2 - Amoussou starts busy with kicks and punches, though they're coupled with much more lateral movement. Left roundhouse kick lands to the body for Amoussou. Amoussou throws another body kick and Gomez catches it, but Amoussou gets his balance and hits a slick outside foot sweep. Amoussou is falling back with a deep heel hook seconds later, and Gomez guts it out long enough to hand-fight Amoussou's grip loose. They clinch up after resetting on the feet and Amoussou steers Gomez onto the cage with an underhook, but can't get much done before Gomez breaks free.
Gomez slugs Amoussou with a heavy right over the top, the best shot of the round thus far. Glancing left from Amoussou. Gomez connects with a left and a hard right, and Amoussou answers with a volley of heaters while in hot pursuit. They clinch again but Amoussou can't find the foot sweep. Another heavy step-in left from Gomez. Amoussou loosens three punches and lands partially with the last, then tries a jumping double knee. Gomez drills Amoussou with another lead left and then freezes him with a straight right. 10-9 Gomez, as Amoussou's heel hook didn't equate to the heavy combos he landed later.
Round 3 - Gomez is the first to connect flush after a minute of even and somewhat uneventful striking. Amoussou clinches but can't keep Gomez from circling off and landing stiffer shots in open-space exchanges. Amoussou ties him up again and keeps him there with the over-under grip until a low knee from Gomez causes another semi-intervention from Miragliotta, but Amoussou doesn't even want to stop.
They restart in the center and Amoussou goes back to his clinch-heavy strategy, now using the collar and elbow grip to keep Gomez in place. While his control increases, Amoussou's offensive output decreases. They separate with a few seconds left and bomb away with neither landing anything significant. 10-10 round for neither differentiating themselves with effective offense. I have it 30-28 for Gomez.
- Karl Amoussou defeats David Gomez by split decision (29-28 x 2, 28-29)
Round 1 - Campos takes the center and peels off a four-punch combo. Pitbull tries his classic jump knee but Campos side-steps it. Double jab from Campos. Pitbull glances with a counter right hook. Triple jab and a right hook on the way in for Campos, then a spinning kick on the next exchange. Campos pivots left and counters nicely with a right/left. Campos lands with a lead left and another left to the body. Low kick from Campos, then a lunging combination.
Pitbull finally finds the mark with a heavy shot to the head, then another downstairs. Pitbull stays in place and counters on Campos' incoming barrage again. Campos wades forward with four or five punches to steer Pitbull on the cage and then unloads a few short shots in the phone booth. Campos doubles up his lefts on the way in, fires a right and then two more lefts over the top, all while marching forward. Beautiful combination work from Campos here. Campos counters Pitbull's lead left with two lefts to the jaw. 10-9 Campos.
Round 2 - Pitbull comes out for the second with his guns blazing, trading evenly with Campos until they land simultaneous left hands with Campos getting the worst of it. His legs buckle and he goes down -- Pitbull pounces with strikes and Campos holds covers up, gets back to his feet and then gets clubbed with a massive overhand right. Campos goes down again and Pitbull jumps on him with strikes, passes to mount and then pounds Campos out when he gives up his back.
- Patricky "Pitbull" Freire defeats Derek Campos by TKO (punches), Round 2
Bellator 117 Preliminary Card
defeats by KO, Round 2
Trey Brown defeats