Bellator Announce Two Title Bouts for May 9th in San Jose
BarnBurner Sports Writer
Sunday, February 16, 2020
Bellator are bringing a stacked card to the SAP Center in San Jose, California on May 9th with two main event title fights that is sure to generate plenty of interest.
In the main event, reigning Bellator Heavyweight and Light-Heavyweight Champion Ryan Bader will defend his light-heavyweight title against top contender Vadim Nemkov. Since winning the Heavyweight Grand Prix, Bader has expressed his desire to remain active and defend both titles.
Bader last fought Cheick Kongo this past September, where he defended his Bellator Heavyweight Championship for the first time. The fight ended in a no contest after Kongo was unable to continue following an accidental eye-poke at 3:52 of the first round.
Although the fight ended in a no contest, Bader had controlled the entire round and looked like he was on his way to finishing his opponent.
Bader’s opponent, Nemkov, is coming into this fight following an impressive 6-fight win streak that includes four victories inside the Bellator cage against former Bellator Light-Heavyweight Champions Liam McGeary and Phil Davis, and most recently against former Bellator Middleweight Champion Rafael Carvalho.
The co-main event is a very intriguing fight for the vacant Bellator Middleweight Championship as former champion Gegard Mousasi takes on reigning Bellator Welterweight Champion Douglas Lima.
Rafael Lovato Jr. was forced to relinquish the Middleweight Championship as a result of ongoing medial issues that will take him out of action indefinitely. Lovato Jr. discussed his medial issues on Joe Rogan’s podcast: Joe Rogan Experience, and relinquishing the title and taking care of his health is and should be a top priority.
Mousasi vs Lima makes sense in terms of where both fighters stand in their respective division. Prior to losing the middleweight title to Lovato Jr., Mousasi had been on an 8-fight win streak dating back to 2016, which included wins over Vitor Belfort, Thiago Santos, Chris Weidman, and Rory MacDonald. Mousasi got back in the win column this past September, when he defeated Lyoto Machida by split-decision.
Lima on the other hand is more than deserving of getting a middleweight title shot; he won the Welterweight World Grand Prix after defeating Andre Koreshkov, Michael “Venom” Page, and champion Rory MacDonald. Lima is considered a large welterweight and will likely fare much better than former Welterweight Champion Rory MacDonald did when he moved up to 185lbs to challenge Mousasi.
It is still unknown what other fights Bellator have in store for this event, but this is a great sign for the promotion in that they kicked off 2020 with a massive fight between Julia Budd and the debuting Cris Cyborg and look to continue generating interest and building their brand globally.
Photo Credit: Bellator MMA
Video Credit: JRE Clips (YouTube)