This weekend sucked. I know I’m a journalist and I’m supposed to be all objective and stuff. That’s fair. But sometimes a spade should be called a spade, and Bellator wasted my god damn weekend.
I sit at home with the expectation of good matchmaking and good fights. I don’t think that’s too much to ask for as a fight fan. I’m sure Scott Coker came into all this with the best of intentions. He’s proven himself to be a solid matchmaker in the past. Blah blah. But it’s pretty clear that his plans did not come to fruition.
Bellator 215 started off okay. As a play-by-play guy, short fights are my friend. The first two fights were short, sweet, and entertaining. Cool. My esteemed co-worker Mookie Alexander actually had the audacity to predict a short night. Unsurprisingly, things went to hell after that because he’s the worst. Two awful fights that felt like they took seven hours led us into our main event between Matt Mitrione and Sergei Kharitonov. And in 15 seconds that actually played out over like 47 minutes, we had outselves a No Contest due to a kick in the babushas that had me seriously concerned about Kharitonov’s nether region safety.
I don’t often care about another man’s illicit parts. That seems fair. But Sergei was in so much pain that I was actually worried. I want to send him a card. I’m not sure Hallmark covers nut shots, but I’m going to look into it tomorrow.
And then we move onto today. Bellator 216. MVP vs. Daley. The real show. Or so we were told.
Things started off with a bang, which isn’t all that surprising with fighters most of us have never heard of. We got a quick, entertaining TKO out of a women’s fight. Cool. But then things went to shit. I apologize for swearing, but you had the choice to change the proverbial channel (yeah it was on DAZN, shut it) any time over the next four fights.
I did not. I get paid to watch all kinds of awful! Yay! It’s not as cool as it sounds. Honest.
Yaroslav Amosov vs. Erick Silva was actually entertaining, in a “shouldn’t this be on AXS TV” kinda way. I think Amosov actually has a future as a contender, and Silva is rarely dull. Like last night, things started well. That’s what she said.
The next three fights on the main card were various shades of awful though. Like next level awful.
Mirko Cro Cop looked like Bellator has ZERO drug testing. He was comically massive for a 67-year-old man. He felt so good that he actually threw head and body kicks! I never ever ever fall into the trap of accusing fighters of doping. It’s self-defeating. But, COME ON MAN. Are we just gonna act like that wasn’t a thing? Y’all can. I won’t. Can’t wait for Cro Cop vs. Brock at WrestleMania, bro. Sorry Seth.
Cheick Kongo and Vitaly Minakov just kind of charged at each other like aquarium creatures with overactive thyroids. They threw some decent stuff inside, both of them, but it was truly awkward when they weren’t within six inches of each other. Next.
And then we get to the much-anticipated main event between next-level strikers Paul Daley and Michael Page. I’m a massive Paul Daley fan. Semtex vs. Nick Diaz is one of my favorite fights of all time. Daley’s highlight reel is longer than my rap sheet. It was guaranteed violence!
MVP stayed at archery range, and Daley couldn’t deal. So he turned into NCAA Div 1 Paul Daley and dove on more takedowns than your average Jacob Volkmann fight. Paul Daley, the innovator of violence, the guy with a nickname that’s literally explosive...turned into a shy ass wrestler. Against a guy dancing on the sidelines the cage against like a goddamned shitty gazelle. And lost!
I can’t even.
I didn’t want to even write this because I’m so disappointed and disillusioned with all this garbage. I was told that I should vent my feelings and write it anyway. Fair.
Well, let me sum up my feelings with a few choice words.
Stop wasting my time with your bullshit, Bellator. Three hours for five fights is unacceptable in 2019. Making Goldy and Big John try to equate a four-time NCAA-level wrestler with a Romanian national champion for 15 minutes is pathetic and an insult to the audience you apparently care about. Having anything to say about drug testing and then trotting out action-figure Mirko Cro Cop at 109 years old looking like a Croatian god is even worse.
Come on man. You can do better. Be better.