Bellator 96 Adds Heavyweight Tournament To Stacked Card, Programming Extended To Three Hours


Bellator 96 is starting to look like a really great event, the stacked card already boasts such names as War Machine, Ronato Sobral, Michael Chandler, Dave Jansen, Jacob Noe, Seth Petruzelli and King Mo. Well news has emerged today that a four man heavyweight tourney will bulk out the main card, adding some more big(ish) names to the already awesome roster.

So let’s take a look at some of the HW hitters at Bellator 96:

VItaly Minakov

Undefeated in 10 outings, a Russian Sambo Grand Master and known for his power-it’s no wonder that VItaly Minakov has been labelled as ‘The New Emperor’ and ‘Fedor Prototype’. Minakov was last seen in action at Bellator 79 where he knocked out countryman Vladimir Starcencov in two. He will face a stern test at Bellator 96-in the form of:

Ron Sparks

Aside from being one scary looking son of a bitch gentleman, Ron Sparks likes to spend his time knocking 265lb. fighters out in the first round. Only one of his victories lasted more than one round (a decision win over Jonathan Ivey), with his sole loss coming by KO at the hands of Eric Prindle. ‘The Monster’ has been out of action since 2011 and will look to improve his record to 9-1 against Minakov.

Richard Hale

Hale will look to rebound from a decision loss to Alexander Volkov in December of last year. Sporting a 21-5-1record and standing 6ft4 tall, ‘Rare Breed’ will look to utilize his 80.5 inch reach to improve his total career knockouts to 10. Before coming up short for the vacant BFC strap against Volkov, Hale was on a four fight streak for the organization, all coming by knockout, so you know the guy is game. His opponent for the night will be:

Vinicius Queiroz

‘Spartan’ is perhaps known to fans for his brief tour of the UFC‘s HW division, back in 2010 Queiroz was submitted by Rob Broughton (+1 for the Brits) at UFC 120. Following the loss Queiroz was sent packing by the UFC for testing positive for steroids. Since then he has only competed twice-an armbar win over Mark Holata and a TKO loss to Alexander Volkov at Bellator 75 and 80 respectively. With five of his six wins coming by knockout, expect some real fireworks in this scrap.

So four heavy hitting Heavyweights added to a super stacked Bellator 96, things are looking good for the consensus number 2 MMA organization. Stay tuned to Lowkick!


  • Bellator's heavyweight division, the worst divison in major league combat sports