Pettis met the current RIZIN FF bantamweight champion and former Bellator bantamweight champion Kyoji Horiguchi for his first title defense, and it was not looking good for him as the fight went on. Horiguchi pressed forward and found success in the stand-up, firing off some right hands and heavy leg kicks. He even mixed in some wrestling for good measure. Pettis was unable to do anything offensively and seemed to have some trouble finding Horiguchi, who stayed out of range of most of his opponent’s attacks.
It was clear that Horiguchi was doing what he needed to do to reclaim the championship he never lost in competition, but that changed in a split second during the fourth round. Pettis went for a head kick that Horiguchi ducked under. Though he missed, Pettis still found his target and uncorked a spinning backfist that put Horiguchi out cold immediately. Unreal.
Pettis retained his bantamweight championship and secured a ‘Knockout of the Year’ contender in one fell swoop.
Jeremy Kennedy and Emmanuel Sanchez were involved in some fun wrestling exchanges, but it was the No. 9 ranked featherweight who proved to be the superior fighter on the ground. Kennedy was relentless in his pursuit of the takedown and kept Sanchez on his back for the majority of the first round. Sanchez tried to go for a triangle choke toward the end of it, but Kennedy was aware of the attempt and made sure to avoid it before the bell rung.
Sanchez went for his own takedown in the beginning of the second round, but Kennedy defended well and continued to outwork him throughout the fight. A Hail Mary guillotine in the final seconds of the third round from ‘El Matador’ did not put ‘JBC’ in any real danger and he ultimately lost via unanimous decision. Kennedy returned to the win column, while Sanchez suffered his third consecutive loss this year.
Josh Hill punched his way through Jared Scoggins and to an alternate spot in the recently announced Bantamweight Grand Prix with a vicious right hand in the second round of their fight.
Johnny Eblen set the tone for the night in the opener for the main card with a 71-second knockout of Collin Huckbody. The undefeated prospect already had a name in mind for his next appearance under the Bellator banner and called out John Salter, who just challenged Gegard Mousasi for the middleweight championship.
Sergio Pettis def. Kyoji Horiguchi by KO (spinning backfist) at 3:24 of Round 4
Jeremy Kennedy def. Emmanuel Sanchez via unanimous decision (30-27 x3)
Josh Hill def. Jared Scoggins via KO (punch) at 0:56 of Round 2
Josh Hill stiffs Jared Scoggins with a BEAUTIFUL right hand KO!— BellatorMMA (@BellatorMMA) December 4, 2021
The “Gentleman” delivers on his KO promise LIVE on @SHOsports.
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Johnny Eblen def. Collin Huckbody via TKO (punches) at 1:11 of Round 1
"Diamond Hands" strikes again! @JohnnyEblen takes almost no time at all to get his 6️⃣th win inside the Bellator cage.— BellatorMMA (@BellatorMMA) December 4, 2021
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Alexander Shabliy def. Bobby King via unanimous decision (30-27 x3)
Kai Kamaka III def. John de Jesus via unanimous decision (29-28 x3)
Levan Chokheli def. Vinicius de Jesus via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)
Justin Montalvo def. Jacob Bohn via unanimous decision (29-27, 29-28, 29-28)
Mike Hamel def. Killys Mota via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 30-27)
Spike Carlyle def. Dan Moret via submission (rear-naked choke) at 2:58 of Round 3
Spike Carlyle with one of the biggest comeback wins of 2021!— BellatorMMA (@BellatorMMA) December 4, 2021
Tune in to the #Bellator272 prelims, brought to you by @MonsterEnergy & fueled by @sheetz LIVE NOW. ⬇️
Kyle Crutchmer def. Oliver Enkamp via unanimous decision (30-27 x3)