Join us tonight on Bloody Elbow for live streaming video, results, discussion and play-by-play for Bellator 109: Shlemenko vs. Marshall.
Middleweight champion Alexander "Storm" Shlemenko defends the strap against boisterous knockout artist Doug "The Rhino" Marshall in the headliner. The Lightweight Tournament concludes with a finals bout between "Ill" Will Brooks and Alexander "Tiger" Sarnavskiy in the co-main while Rick Hawn and Ron Keslar battle in the Welterweight Tournament finals.
Team Kaobon lightweight Terry Etim makes his promotional debut against Patrick "Lights Out" Cenoble, a promising upstart and the cousin of boxer Andre Berto. Russian heavyweight Blagoi Ivanov, who notably defeated Fedor Emelianenko in Combat Sambo, looks to maintain his unblemished record atop the undercard.
Live play-by-play will commence with the Spike TV card at 9 p.m. ET. Feel free to peruse a preview and list of predictions for the show until the preliminary card, which streams live and free on Bloody Elbow, begins at 7 p.m. ET.
*****We're live on Spike TV -- results below****
R1: Shlemenko commits to a few punches and changes levels for a deep double but Marshall is waving it off from his butt before he stands back up and breaks the clinch. Marshall shells out an inside low kick. Spinning back fist from Shlemenko, who shoots again but can't get the takedown. Marshall uncorks a combo and Shlemenko throws another spinning back fist before nailing a duck-under double leg.
Marshall closes his guard, then pushes the Russian off and hits a nice ankle pick sweep from his back. On the feet, both squeeze the trigger hard and often, landing mutually. There's a brief and awkward pause for a potential low blow received by Marshall. Marshall heaves a pair of huge rights but gets stung with a Bas Rutten style hook to the body. Shlemenko unloads the fury of Mother Russia directly onto Marshall's liver with two more left-handed bullets that crumple him.
- Alexander Shlemenko defeats Doug Marshall by TKO (punches), Round 1
R1: Keslar, who looks almost a full head taller than Hawn, feels the love from his fellow Pennsylvanians in the crowd. Snapping right high kick from Keslar, then a left body kick and right cross. Hawn comes over the top with a right, then flurries quickly with a counter. Keslar bum-rushes him and thuds a knee to the body and somehow just bowls the Olympic Judoka over. Keslar pounces with punches but Hawn covers up and backs him off with up-kicks.
Keslar steps over into half guard but Hawn creates enough space to stand. Keslar tries to keep him in place with the head and elbow clinch but Hawn scoots free. Stiff jab from Hawn, then a quick combo that doesn't land. Front kick by Keslar. Hawn starting to key in one Keslar's level change with uppercuts. Step in right connects for Hawn. Right cross-left hook sails through for Hawn. Keslar stifles his momentum with a bull rush and some threatening in-fighting. Damn close round but I'll go Keslar by a slight margin for overall effectiveness in all categories. 10-9 Keslar.
R2: Keslar stays busy with kicks from outside. Hawn slices in with short punches from a compact stance but Keslar swarms him again with clinch pressure. Hawn stays cool on the fence and uses wrist control to break free. Triple jab from Hawn, landing the last. Hawn pops him with a right hand and stays on the trigger with a probing jab, which is connecting at a higher frequency.
Keslar tries to smother him again but Hawn circles out with both guns blazing, snapping Keslar's head back. More jabs from Hawn, who's turning the tide back his way. Keslar clinches again and holds Hawn on the fence, causing the ref to intervene. Another triple jab and step-in right lands for Hawn. Two more jabs land flush on the kisser. Jab-cross combo for Hawn followed by another pair of jabs. 10-9 Hawn.
R3: Hawn establishes the jab early. Finally Keslar answers with a long jab but Hawn responds with a lightning-fast flurry that wobbles Keslar. Hawn pounces and clubs Keslar with another volley of heaters, then pot-shots him with a meatball as he's staggering backwards.
- Rick Hawn defeats Ron Keslar by TKO (punches), Round 3.
R1: They meet in the center and Tiger lands a body jab. Tiger's spinning roundhouse kick is dodged. Brooks changes levels and Tiger makes a strong statement by shucking it off easily. One-two and left high kick combo from Brooks on the clinch break. Tiger knifes in with a long one-two of his own. Tiger whiffs a spinning back fist but pieces together a nice left-right combo and upward knee from the clinch; Brooks tries a duck-under takedown and gets it but Tiger is right back up.
Brooks jams Tiger on the fence with the over-under, throwing knees to the thigh. Brooks peels Tiger's hips off the cage with a body lock takedown and immediately looks for a pass. Tiger scoots back and wraps him up in a full, closed guard. Brooks postures up and pings down a right. Tiger shrimps out and stands, landing double hooks to the body. Tiger defends Brooks' clinch and lands an up-knee but Brooks gets him down with another double leg. Brooks goes to a Couturesque half guard by underhooking the far-side arm and cradling the head with his right and firing elbows with his left. 10-9 Brooks.
R2: Brooks is light on his toes and busy with left front kicks to start the 2nd. Tiger goes to the body with a jab and misses another spinning back fist. Brooks counter-clinches but can't get the takedown and lands a stiff knee on the cage. They disengage and Brooks hits a blast double to put Tiger down again. Tiger goes rubber guard with his head jammed on the fence and Brooks is more patient in maintaining pressure this time.
Brooks cross-faces with the elbow to smother Tiger and then lands a few pressure-release forearms. Tiger seems to get frustrated and takes a knee, allowing Brooks an easy pass to back control. Brooks gets one hook in and lands successive lefts to the head, causing Tiger to spin into full mount. He clings to double underhooks for dear life to end the round. 10-9 Brooks.
R3: Brooks opens up with a cracking left high kick and then powers Tiger to the floor. The Russian looks a tad helpless in the face of Brooks' merciless onslaught. Brooks sandwiches his head on the fence and peppers with short elbows and punches that spring some blood from Tiger's head. Tiger oddly sticks with a closed guard while his head is on the fence, drastically limiting his options.
Tiger doesn't show a sense of urgency to move and Brooks keep him in the same spot, mashing his face into a bloody pulp with elbows and punches. Brooks gets full mount with a half-minute left and finishes the round with back control after Tiger tries to spin out. 10-8 Brooks for a 30-26 his way.
- Will Brooks defeats Alexander Sarnavskiy by unanimous decision (30-26, 30-27 x 2)
Patrick Cenoble vs. Terry Etim -- Lightweight feature
R1: Etim launches for a deep double leg and switches to an outside trip when he can't get it. Etim quickly slithers through Cenoble's guard and ends up in full mount with double grapevines. Cenoble fights his way back to half and then full guard, though he eats a steady diet of leather for his efforts.
As soon as Cenoble recomposes guard and starts working, Etim disengages with big punches and takes back control on Cenoble's escape attempt. Etim locks in the body triangle from back mount and starts fishing for the rear-naked choke. Etim camps out in back control while Cenoble is on one knee and alternates choke and neck crank attempts. Cenoble shows good patience for a youngster and hand-fights the choke well, but literally ends up defending for 100% of the round. 10-8 Etim for one-sided domination.
R2: Cenoble gets to stand a little to start the round, snapping a jab and a right uppercut. It's brief -- Etim easily changes levels and off-balances Cenoble with a double leg. Cenoble is content to sit in a closed guard with a half overhook. Short elbow from Cenoble. Etim answers, controls down both arms and stacks up for a knee-pin pass to half guard. Cenoble regains half guard and the ref stands them back up.
Cenoble doubles up jabs downstairs and lands a left kick. Etim throws a high right roundhouse kick and phase shifts brilliantly to a double leg, then scurries to side mount instantly. Cenoble rolls out and punches his way free of Etim's front head lock counter. 10-9 Etim.
R3: Cenoble switches to more of a boxing stance and zings out a jab and a one-two. Etim has him on his back 30 seconds in, cementing his phase shifting as the clear difference. Crowd's not digging it though -- Etim passes to half guard and then side mount to the chorus of boos. Cenoble again has his back taken whilst escaping side control and hand-fights the rear-naked choke in Etim's body triangle.
Cenoble motions to the ref and shrugs after a prolonged period of drab back control, then spins out nicely and spends the last 15-20 seconds landing punches from the top. 10-9 Etim for a 30-26 overall on my card.
- Terry Etim defeats Patrick Cenoble by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-26, 29-28)
Bellator 109 Preliminary Card (Bloody Elbow at 7:00 p.m. ET)