Bellator sent the following press release to MMATorch regarding an exclusive Fan Fest added next weekend in New York City’s Times Square which includes a “meet and greet” with Tito Ortiz and Royce Gracie at the start of the biggest weekend of Bellator’s existence
MEET MMA LEGENDS TITO ORTIZ AND ROYCE GRACIE ON FRIDAY, JUNE 23 AT DAVE & BUSTER’S TIMES SQUARE
Los Angeles – Prior to the biggest event in Bellator history, Bellator NYC: Sonnen vs. Silva, fans have the opportunity to meet MMA legends Tito Ortiz and Royce Gracie during an exclusive Fan Fest on Friday, June 23 beginning at 8 p.m. ET at the Dave & Buster’s Times Square location.
Dave & Buster’s, a season-long partner of Bellator MMA, is offering Bellator Nation members the chance to meet two of the biggest names in the sport. Fan Fest is free for Bellator Nation Members with RSVP, who can sign up at www.Bellator.com/fan-fest.
Known as one of the toughest competitors in MMA, Tito Ortiz is a fan-favorite across the world. Utilizing his wrestling background, Ortiz was a punishing competitor who defended his title an impressive five times. Always with a flair for the dramatic, Ortiz engaged in several intense rivalries over his career with the likes of Ken Shamrock and Chuck Liddell. Under the direction of Bellator MMA, the 42-year-old Ortiz claimed a trio of victories that included a pair of first-round finishes over Alexander Shlemenko and Chael Sonnen.
The name Gracie is synonymous with MMA, and that is in large part to Royce Gracie, the man who is considered to have invented the sport as we know it today. The winner of the first several UFC events, Gracie dismantled multiple opponents in a single night, many of which were much larger than him. For many years, there was no answer for the Gracie jiu-jitsu technique that he brought to the cage. Today, it’s difficult to find an MMA fighter who has not trained in the art of Brazilian jiu-jitsu that his father invented. In February of 2016, Gracie headlined Bellator 149, an event that shattered company viewership records.
Headlined by the long-awaited bout between two of the biggest names in mixed martial arts history, Chael Sonnen (29-15-1) and Wanderlei Silva (35-12-1, 1 NC), Bellator NYC: Sonnen vs. Silva airs live on pay-per-view beginning at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT. Emanating from Madison Square in New York City, the mecca of combat sports, this blockbuster event includes a heavyweight bout between MMA legend Fedor Emelianenko and hard-hitting Matt Mitrione, along with two championship bouts, including Douglas Lima (28-6) defending his 170-pound strap against Lorenz Larkin(18-5, 1 NC) and current lightweight champion Michael Chandler (16-3) putting his world title on the line against the undefeated Brent Primus (7-0).
Prior to the pay-per-view, SPIKE will air Bellator 180: Davis vs. Bader LIVE and FREE on both coasts beginning at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT. The event is headlined by a light heavyweight title bout between current champ Phil Davis (17-3, 1 NC) and top contender Ryan Bader (22-5). Additionally, Bellator 180 prelims will air exclusively on Bellator.com and the Bellator Mobile App at 6 p.m. ET/3 p.m. PT.
Bellator NYC: Sonnen vs. Silva Card (Pay-Per-View):
Light Heavyweight Main Event: Chael Sonnen (29-15-1) vs. Wanderlei Silva (35-12-1, 1 NC)
Heavyweight Main Event: Fedor Emelianenko (36-4, 1 NC) vs. Matt Mitrione (11-5)
Welterweight World Title Bout: Douglas Lima (28-6) vs. Lorenz Larkin (18-5, 1 NC)
Lightweight World Title Bout: Michael Chandler (16-3) vs. Brent Primus (7-0)
Lightweight Feature Bout: Aaron Pico (Debut) vs. Zach Freeman (8-2)
Bellator 180: Davis vs. Bader Card (SPIKE):
Light Heavyweight World Title Bout: Phil Davis (17-3, 1 NC) vs. Ryan Bader (22-5)
Featherweight Bout: James Gallagher (6-0) vs. Chinzo Machida (5-2)
Welterweight Bout: Neiman Gracie (5-0) vs. Dave Marfone (5-2)
Women’s Flyweight Preliminary Bout: Heather Hardy (Debut) vs. Alice Yauger (4-5)
Bellator 180: Davis vs. Bader Preliminary Card (Bellator.com):
Welterweight Preliminary Bout: Ryan Couture (10-5) vs. Haim Gozali (7-3)
Lightweight Preliminary Bout: Jerome Mickle (2-1) vs. Anthony Giacchina (1-1)
Catchweight Preliminary Bout (168 1bs.): John Salgado (4-7-1) vs. Hugh McKenna (0-1)
Catchweight Preliminary Bout (130 1bs.): Matt Rizzo (9-2, 1 NC) vs. Sergio da Silva (6-8)
VOW Fight – Lightweight Preliminary Bout: Nate Grebb (3-1) vs. Bradley Desir (9-5)