Several weeks ago Bellator MMA announced that they would be holding their first pay-per-view fight this November 2nd and that it would feature at the top of its card a bout between Rampage Jackson & Tito Ortiz.
In support of the main-card event, Bellator President Bjorn Rebney promised “several” title fights would be added to the card.
In the weeks that have followed, Rebney has been able to pull-the-trigger on a deal with Edie Alvarez and in doing so, added him to the card for a much anticipated re-match bout with current Bellator lightweight champion, Michael Chandler.
Rebney also added a very interesting bout featuring interim light-heavyweight champion Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal and last year’s tournament winner, Emanuel Newton. This is an interesting re-match bout between the two, because Newton, a relative unknown prior to their last meeting, was expected by most to lose to Lawal. However, as with a lot of things, the fight did not go to plan and Newton caught King Mo with a beautiful spinning (after-thought) back-fist in round 1 and KO’d Lawal in the middle of the cage.
Many, including myself, put his loss down to arrogance and ego, and the fact that he wasn’t taking Newton seriously. In this re-match, Lawal will be looking to avenge the loss and prove that he’s learned the lesson taught him, that night. Win or lose, this should be a great fight and one, like Chandler / Alvarez, which has a saleable back-story to it.
In addition to the two title fights already on the card, Bellator has announced today, the addition of a 3rd title defense to the card, by way of featherweight champion Pat Curran defending his belt against Daniel Straus. This fight too, is a re-match and will see the 7 & 1(BMMA) Straus attempting to avenge a 2009 XFO loss, to the 9 & 1 (BMMA) champion.
In announcing the bout, Rebney stated:
“Pat Curran’s one of the best mixed martial artists we have in the game today. Before breaking his hand, Straus was a fixture in the Top 10 rankings with a huge amount of talent. Curran vs. Straus is a fight I’ve wanted to see since Daniel won the tournament a year ago last May. This should be an epic world title fight and our PPV provides the perfect stage.”
Curran, who will be defending his belt for the second time since seizing the title from Joe Warren last year, says that he won’t be taking Straus lightly or thinking about their previous fight and that he’s excited to be part of Bellator’s inaugural PPV.
In comment, Curran remarked:
“I’ve been with Bellator since the beginning, and seen my career grow as Bellator has; it means the world to me to be able to defend my title on our first pay-per-view, especially with such a tough fight ahead of me. I’m not taking Straus lightly. He is an incredibly tough featherweight, and I’m not even thinking about our first fight in 2009, we are two totally different guys right now. This card is stacked, and I want to give Bellator and all our fans a great show.”
However, where Curran might not be thinking about their previous fight, Straus most certainly is. Straus, who won the Season 6 featherweight tournament in May of last year and is, coming off of a broken hand that sidelined him for several months, wants nothing more than to get his title-shot and avenge his 2009 loss to Curran.
As he put it:
“It’s finally here. I’ve faced so many setbacks over the last year and my title shot is finally here. When Pat and I met in 2009, we were two completely different fighters. Both of us have developed so much in that time, but I still want that loss of my record. That fight taught me a lot about where I was as a fighter, especially considering I’ve gone 17-1 since we last met.
I’m just excited to be able to get a chance to fight for a title on a huge stage like this. I really don’t know how this fight is going to end, but I envision it going quickly. This won’t be a long, drawn out process. I’m going in for the kill.”
All in all, it’s looking to be a good card, at least below the main-event and one I suspect I’ll catch at a bar and not on PPV. At 35 to 45 dollars it’s a little steep, as a buy.