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Bellator Middleweight Tournament Begins At Two Different Events

Bellator Middleweight Tournament Begins At Two Different Events

The four-man Bellator middleweight tournament will begin at two upcoming events, as Brett Cooper faces Kendall Grove at Bellator 114 and Dan Cramer meets Doug Marshall at Bellator 115.

Bellator 114 goes down March 28 from Utah’s Maverik Center, while Bellator 115 takes place April 4 from the Reno Events Center. Both fights – and main cards – will air on Spike TV.

Cooper (19-9) is coming off a decision loss to current Bellator champion Alexander Shlemenko. After putting together a six-fight win streak, Cooper has dropped his last two fights.

“Grove is a tough customer but I’m going to put him away,” Cooper said. “I really am pulling for Marshall in the other side of the bracket, so I can smash his face in the finals. And after that, the Russian has it coming too. I’m not looking past anybody in this tournament, it’s full of tough, skilled guys but whoever is in my way to the title is getting two basic food groups: leather and canvas.”

Grove (20-13), a veteran of the UFC, has won his last two – including a decision victory last October in his Bellator debut over Joe Vedepo. He is 6-3 in his last nine fights overall.

“I’m very excited to be a part of the next Bellator middleweight tournament,” Grove said. “These tournaments are an awesome way to fight the best guys in the division quickly and get that title shot. Cooper is a tough guy, but I’ll be ready on March 28.”

Marshall (18-7) was defeated by Shlemenko in his most recent fight, falling via knockout last November. He had won four straight prior to that. He failed the post-fight drug test and was suspended until earlier this month.

“’The Rhino’ will be running through guys with brutal KO’s and giving the fans a show,” Marshall said. “I want to prove that my fight against Shlemenko was a fluke, and I’m ready to make another run through that tournament and get another title shot.”

Cramer (10-4) is 3-1 in his last four, with the most recent being a TKO loss to Cooper. He has been with Bellator since 2010 and actually had his first two pro fights in the UFC, defeating Matt Arroyo and falling to Matthew Riddle.

“I am really excited to get back into the tournament,” Cramer said. “It is going to be an exciting fight and Doug and I are both sluggers. This is going to be a tough fight for both of us and will come down to who wants it more. “