BISHOP: Bellator’s Mike Kimbel a potential future star

By Chris Bishop, MMATorch Contributor

What a huge weekend it was for Bellator. After shows Friday and Saturday night, we now know who will meet in the finals of the Heavyweight Grand Prix. Ryan Bader will meet Fedor Emelianenko this January to determine who will become the Bellator Heavyweight Champion. Also, Bellator started their welterweight tournament which consists of eight fighters such as Michael Venom Page, Rory McDonald and Paul Daley. Lorenz Larkin defeated Ion Pascu via unanimous decision to become the alternate for that tournament should someone sustain an injury.

However, there was one fighter who outshined all of that noise on Friday night. Twenty-one year old Mike Kimbel defeated Alex Potts and only required six seconds to do so which tied a Bellator record for the fastest finish in the company. The record likely would have been broke if Kimbel had chosen not to touch gloves. The fight started with Alex Potts throwing a job and Kimbel parrying it and delivering a vicious right hook which knocked Potts down. Kimbel immediately jumped all over Potts and got the finish.

This kid has potential

Kimbel started his MMA professional career at Bellator 194 when he knocked out Geoffrey Then in just 1:03 of the first round. He was then given a contract with Bellator after that performance and even signed with Paradigm Sports Management team which is the same company that manages for Conor McGregor. In fact, Kimbel said he received a surprise call from McGregor the night before his big win on Friday. You can definitely see some of the McGregor swagger in this twenty-one year when after his win, he discussed some of the frustrations he had with having to stay away from sex leading up to his fight.

There are some who question the potential of Kimbel. There does seem to be some growing up that needs to be done on his part which could be said for most twenty-one year olds. He missed weight for this fight by half a pound. To most, that would seem like no big deal but the reason for missing weight should raise a few eyebrows. He overslept. Another reason why some may be hesitant to join the Kimbel bandwagon is his amateur career. As an amateur Kimbel was just 4-4. When asked about that, Kimbel explained it away as being an 18 year who was in the cage fighting with grown men and never taking the easy matchups.

In the end, Kimbel has the skill and the personality that could lead to him being a huge star. There is a delicate balancing act that should be played as he moves forward. His team should exercise a bit of patience. He’s a fighter who could use the extra time to truly mature and become a professional. With that being said Bellator should definitely get behind this kid and promote him. You can’t let someone who has the “it factor’ as Kimbel does be on your prelims for too much longer.

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