HYDEN BLOG: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly from Bellator vs. Rizin 2 and UFC 291

By: Frank Hyden, MMATorch Senior Columnist

Bellator vs. Rizin 2 and UFC 291 were this past weekend and featured
some big fights. Who won and who lost? Let’s get to the rundown.

Bellator vs. Rizin 2
GOOD- Andrey Koreshkov vs. Lorenz Larkin
Larkin starts with a low kick as Koreshkov starts with some jabs. They
trade punches before Koreshkov gets a takedown. He doesn’t do much
until the end of the first round, where he unloads some bombs onto
Larkin. The second round begins with them exchanging strikes and
Koreshkov attacking the body. Koreshkov tries for another takedown but
can’t get it and the second round ends. The third round sees Koreshkov
get a couple of takedowns but can’t really do a whole lot with any of
them. The third round and fight end so we go to the judges. Koreshkov
wins the Split Decision and improves to 27-4 and has won 5 straight
fights while Larkin drops to 25-8 with 2 No Contests. Good win for

GOOD- Magomed Magomedov submits Danny Sabatello
Sabatello gets a big slam early and starts looking for a choke.
Magomedov gets up and Sabatello shoots in for another takedown. He
gets stuffed but shoots in again and Magomedov grabs an anaconda
choke. They scramble and Magomedov grabs a tight guillotine and
Sabatello has to tap not quite four minutes into the first round.
Magomedov improves to 20-3 and has alternated wins and losses in his
last 5 fights while Sabatello drops to 14-3 and has alternated wins
and losses in his last 4 fights. Good win for Magomedov.

GOOD- Kana Watanabe vs. Veta Arteaga
Watanabe immediately gets into the clinch and starts throwing knees.
She mixes in some punches before fighting for a takedown. Watanabe
starts teeing off on Arteaga before the first round ends. The second
round begins with a Watanabe takedown attempt that gets stuffed so she
starts throwing punches. Watanabe gets a takedown but Arteaga is
quickly back up so Watanabe gets another takedown and the second round
ends. The third round starts with Watanabe getting stuffed on a
takedown attempt. The exchange for a bit before Arteaga gets a
takedown. She starts unloading but Watanabe defends until the end of
the third round and the fight. We go to the judges and Watanabe wins
the decision to improve to 12-2-1 while Arteaga drops to 7-6. Good win
for Watanabe.

BAD/UGLY- Kyoji Horiguchi vs. Makoto Takahashi ends in a No Contest
(eye poke)

Takahashi gets poked in the eye not even thirty seconds into the fight
and can’t continue. This fight was for the inaugural Bellator
Flyweight Championship so it sucks even worse. Horiguchi pawed his
left hand with his fingers sticking straight out at Takahashi and
that’s why the eye poke happened. For that reason Horiguchi should be
disqualified. He shouldn’t get a No Contest, he should get a Loss and
Takahashi given a Win. That was an intentional eye poke. When you
stick your hand and your fingers straight out like that, you know
exactly what you’re doing. There’s no defense for when fighters do
this kind of stuff. It’s complete nonsense and needs to be legislated
out of the sport. I’m not saying to give Takahashi the Bellator
Flyweight Title but Horiguchi needs to be given the Loss. Horiguchi is
now 31-5 with 1 No Contest while Takahashi is 16-1-1 with 1 No Contest
and has his 10 fight winning streak snapped. Moving on…

GOOD- Patricky “Pitbull” Freire stops Roberto de Souza
They’re trading early but not a lot of big strikes are landing in the
first round. The second round begins with Pitbull all over de Souza
with strikes. A jumping knee from Pitbull drops de Souza but Pitbull
backs off and makes him get up and the second round ends. The third
round starts with Pitbull attacking with calf kicks and the second one
drops de Souza. Pitbull pounces and the referee has to jump in to stop
the fight not quite fifty seconds into the third round. Pitbull was
scheduled to face A.J. McKee in the quarterfinals of the Bellator
Lightweight World Grand Prix but McKee had to pull out due to injury
so de Souza, who’s the Rizin Lightweight Champion, took the fight on a
few day’s notice and the fight continued at a 161 lb. catchweight.
Pitbull will advance in the Grand Prix now as he improves to 25-11
while de Souza drops to 15-3. Good win for Pitbull.

UFC 291
GOOD- Kevin Holland submits Michael Chiesa
Holland attacks the body early and they grapple for a bit before
Holland slams a knee into Chiesa and grabs a D’Arce choke to force the
tap a little over halfway through the first round. Slick moves from
Holland, who improves to 25-9 with 1 No Contest while Chiesa drops to
18-7 and has lost 3 straight fights. Good win for Holland.

GOOD- Bobby Green submits Tony Ferguson
They’re striking early until Ferguson drops Green with a right hand.
He lets Green up, who begins attacking him with some big strikes but
the first round ends before anything too damaging lands. The second
round begins with them grappling and winding up on the ground. Green
works some ground-and-pound until he lets Ferguson up. They exchange
strikes, with Green getting the better of it until the second round
ends. The third round starts with more striking exchanges until
Ferguson gets caught in an arm triangle and passes out with mere
seconds to go in the third round and fight. Good stuff from Green, who
improves to 30-14-1 with 1 No Contest while Ferguson drops to 25-9 and
has lost 6 straight fights. Good win for Green.

GOOD- Derrick Lewis stops Marcos Rogerio de Lima
Lewis lands a flying knee right away that drops de Lima. Lewis pounds
away until the referee jumps in to stop the fight a little over thirty
second into the first round. Lewis improves to 27-11 with 1 No Contest
and snaps his 3 fight losing streak while de Lima drops to 21-9-1.
Lewis now holds the record for the most knockouts in UFC history with
14 (6 in the first round). That’s also the most finishes in the
history of the UFC heavyweight division. 22 of his 27 wins have come
by knockout. Good win for Lewis.

GOOD- Alex Pereira vs. Jan Blachowicz
Blachowicz doggedly tries for a takedown and finally gets it.
Blachowicz takes Pereira’s back and tries for a choke but can’t get it
and the first round ends. The second round begins with Pereira working
the body early with strikes. Pereira leg kicks hurt Blachowicz, who
responds with another takedown. Pereira gets up and begins landing
some good strikes to Blachowicz before the second round ends. The
third round starts with some good striking exchanges. They’re both
mixing up their striking well. Pereira keeps working the body as he
defends a takedown attempt. Blachowicz goes back to it, though, and
gets another takedown. shortly before the third round and fight end.
We go to the judges and Pereira wins the Split Decision to improve to
8-2 while Blachowicz drops to 29-10-1. It was a close fight. I think I
agree with Pereira getting the win. I thought he won but Blachowicz
fought well and it was close. Good win for Pereira.

GOOD- Justin Gaethje stops Dustin Poirier
They’re trading leg kicks early before mixing in punches as well.
They’re both hitting each other with some nice strikes. Lots of
punches are being thrown and some Gaethje leg kicks as well before the
first round ends. The second round begins with more leg kicks from
Gaethje before he suddenly blasts Poirier with a head kick that turns
out the lights exactly one minute into the second round. Wow. Gaethje
improves to 25-4 while Poirier drops to 29-8 with 1 No Contest. Good
win for Gaethje and a thrilling finish to an exciting card.

My new fantasy book is out. It’s called Kingdom of Zarias: A Fight For
. It’s the third book in my epic fantasy Kingdom of Zarias
series and follows the adventures of the Summers siblings as they
fight to defend the world from an evil villain named Galren. This book
also introduces lots of other characters as the scope of the world
grows. There’s lots of action, magic, and monsters in the Kingdom of
Zarias. It’s like a tabletop game in novel form. It’s on Amazon,
Barnes & Noble, and many other places. If you’re interested, I would
greatly appreciate it if you would check it out and support me. Also,
here’s the link to my new Compendium book about the Kingdom of Zarias
series- KoZ Compendium
Thank you very much, have a good day.

Comments and suggestions can be emailed to me at
hydenfrank@gmail.com and you can follow me on Twitter at @hydenfrank.
Thanks for reading and have a good day.

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