With Bellator’s debut on a new TV network weeks away, the promotion has released the main card fights. Two title fights and the opening of the light heavyweight tournament are planned. The winner of the tournament receives a guaranteed title shot.
“The origin of Bellator was to provide a seamless connection between real sports competition and mixed martial arts, and I believe we have taken that to the next level with a true tournament bracket format,” said Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney.
For the featherweight championship Pat Curran (17-4) defends his title against knockout master Patricio Pitbull (17-1). Lightweight champion Michael Chandler (10-0) meets former Olympian Rick Hawn (14-1).
The quarterfinals of the light heavyweight tournament will feature Renato Sobral (37-9) vs. Mikhail Zayats (19-6), Seth Petruzelli (14-6) vs. Jacob Noe (8-1-1 NC), Emanuel Newton (18-7) vs. Atanas Djambazov (17-2).
Bellator debuts on Spike TV, January 17, with a start time of 10. p.m. ET. The event comes from the Bren Center in Irvine, CA. The following week will be the Bellator debut of Muhammed King Mo” Lawal (8-1-1 NC).