Two months ago, Josh Thomson ended his UFC career with a loss to Tony Ferguson. Tonight in his hometown of San Jose, the former Strikeforce lightweight champion reunited with Scott Coker and made his Bellator MMA debut on the big Dynamite show. His opponent was Fight Master runner-up Mike Bronzoulis, who was dressed up in Gladiator garb in the walkout.
Thomson came out aggressively throwing uppercuts and knees with Bronzoulis against the fence. Bronzoulis and Thomson both slipped throwing strikes, continuing a theme we'd seen even on the prelims. Thomson took Bronzoulis down 2 minutes in. Josh moved his way to side control and then worked for mount, but didn't do much in the way of offensive damage.He finished the round in full mount but the bell sounded before he could mount any strikes.
"The Punk" easily weathered Bronzoulis' forward movement and worked for a takedown, which he got 1 minute into round 2. He advanced to side control quicker than the last round but Bronzoulis turned and made his way out of a potentially bad spot. Thomson threw some punches and worked for back mount, but Bronzoulis escaped and they returned to their feet. Late in the round, Thomson moved into full mount and worked on his ground-and-pound. Bronzoulis absorbed some elbows and was otherwise completely overmatched.
Bronzoulis partially landed a good head kick and a knee that caught the attention of Thomson, who immediately grabbed a hold of him and drove him to the mat. Seconds later, an arm-triangle choke was slapped on and Bronzoulis tapped instantly.
Official result: Josh Thomson def. Mike Bronzoulis via submission (arm-triangle choke) at :39 of round 3