Bellator

Bellator 267: The Preview

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Bellator 267 goes down on Friday night, with Wembley arena hosting the highly anticipated re-match between Michael Venom Page and Douglas Lima. The card is dominated by British talent, who look to make a name for themselves on the Bellator roster.

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the last time we saw Bellator in London, was when MVP headlined the event. He knocked out Gianni Mellilo in stunning fashion to round off a wonderful night of fights. The promotion returns to London with 13 bouts to look forward to on Friday.

Main Card

Main Event: Michael Page vs Douglas Lima

Well, what an incredible main event we have in store for us. Finally, we get to see the re-match between Page and Lima. The Brazilian was the first person to hand Page defeat back in 2019 at Bellator 221.

A leg-kick from Lima swiped Page off his feet, gradually as he was falling, Lima pulled off a stunning uppercut to finish Page for good. Lima shocked the world with his stunning finish, and this led to him beating Rory MacDonald via unanimous decision to become the welterweight champion.

Since the 2019 match-up, Lima, of course, became champion, but then lost his title recently to the undefeated Yaroslav Amosov, who outwrestled Lima over five rounds. He also was defeated in his challenge to become a two-weight champion, with Gegard Mousasi outwrestling him to win the middleweight belt.

Page has worked hard since his defeat, showing his determination to try and earn himself a title shot. He has four finishes in five fights since the Lima loss, and that defeat is still the only one on his record.

It’s safe to say this is more than likely a title eliminator, with Page earning his first title shot if victorious, after being with the promotion since 2013. With Lima being one of the biggest names in Bellator, he will get the rematch he deserves if he’s the winner on Friday night.

Co-Main Event: Leah McCourt vs Jessica Borga

Highly-skilled grappler Leah McCourt returns to the cage after her impressive victory over Janay Harding at Bellator 259. McCourt struggled early on in the fight, but she found her rhythm and does what she does best, finds the choke, secures the finish.

Her opponent is America’s own Jessica Borga, who holds a record of 3-3. She was signed by Bellator after her impressive grappling and ground & pound skills. Borga produced a stunning armbar over Amber Leibrock to secure a first-round finish in her Bellator debut. She looks to get back to winning ways though, with a defeat in her last bout against Talita Nogueira via unanimous decision at Bellator 256.

McCourt will be desperate to put on a show in front of her fellow Brits, and an impressive display is a must if she soon wants to be in contention as Cris Cyborg’s next challenger. Borga can steal the show if she can put on a fight on the ground, and potentially hop straight into the women’s featherweight rankings with a win.

Robert Whiteford vs Andrew Fisher

Robert “The Hammer” Whiteford lived up this nickname on his Bellator debut, producing a staggering uppercut to knock out Sam Sicilia at Bellator London almost two years ago. The Scot had a spell in the UFC from 2013-2016, with wins over Paul Redmond and Daniel Pineda. Whiteford will come out all guns blazing to knock out his opponent on Friday night.

Andrew Fisher is on quite the hot streak himself. Like his fellow opponent, he’s on a four-fight win streak. After a slow start to this Bellator debut, Fisher turned on the style in the second and third rounds to overcome Ashleigh Grimshaw at Bellator Milan last year via unanimous decision. Fireworks are expected from the get-go in this one, with 24 finishes between the two featherweights.

Luke Trainer vs Yannick Bahati

Luke Trainer showed exactly why Bellator signed him in his promotional debut at Bellator Euro Series 8. With only one minute and 22 seconds into the bout, Trainer found the back of Alex O’Toole, to then hammer him to execute the ground & pound finish. Trainer is undefeated, with a 100% finishing record after four wins.

Yannick Bahati will be desperate to get back to winning ways, after a fourth defeat in his last five bouts came at Bellator 230. The former BAMMA & EFC middleweight champion was victorious on his Bellator debut, pulling off a stunning Kimura against Amir Dadovic. We haven’t seen Bahati in the cage since his defeat to Melvin Manhoef two years ago. These two bring sheer power and determination for the finish, don’t expect this one to go the distance.

Yves Landu vs Tim Wilde

At one stage of his career, Yves Landu was in a horrible rut he couldn’t seem to escape from. He went from 7-0 to 9-6, but in recent years, he’s made significant improvements in his game, now holding a record of 16-8. Landu produced a stunning flying knee knockout in the first round over Terry Brazier on his promotional debut at Bellator 248. We haven’t seen Landu in the cage since.

His opponent Tim Wilde was involved in an absolute classic to secure his first win in the promotion against Charlie Leary at Bellator London in 2019. Wilde was defeated in his promotional debut after he took a short-notice fight against Brent Primus at Bellator Birmingham. The Englishman has been a champion in UK promotions such as Golden Ticket Promotions and Full Contact Contender. An unpredictable brawl to open the main card is exactly what we want to see on Friday night.

Prelim Fighters to Watch Out For

Lewis Long

Highly talented grappler Lewis Long makes his first appearance in 2021, after a ridiculous kneebar finish over Melilo at Bellator 247. One thing you don’t want to do is let this man take you to the ground, otherwise, you’re in trouble, as he’s simply mastered the rear-naked choke. After a late opponent change, Long now faces Michael Dubois.

Jack Grant

After four years in Cage Warriors, Jack Grant is now on a different path, as he makes his promotional debut this Friday night. Grant is another experienced grappler, but he’s certainly a menace on the feet also. On three occasions, he lost a title fight in Cage Warriors, with a defeat to Ian Garry for the welterweight title in his previous bout. Grant has a tough challenge in fellow submission artist Nathan Jones, who was victorious in his only appearance in the promotion back in 2017.

Fabacary Diatta

Fabacary Diatta proved his worth in an impressive showing in his promotional debut at Bellator 248. The Frenchman battled it out with Dominique Wooding over three rounds to win via unanimous decision. Hard-hitting Diatta possesses serious power in his fists, whilst his ground game isn’t too shabby either. He’s undefeated with seven wins to his name, but his opponent Nathan Rose could potentially be his toughest challenge yet.

Check out the full card on Bellator’s website.


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Featured Image Credits to Bellator MMA.

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