Rumor Alert: Bellator MMA to schedule Fedor Emelianenko vs. Matt Mitrione in early 2017

Bellator may finally play host to the legendary Russian Heavyweight Fedor Emelianenko.

FloCombat.com reported earlier Saturday morning that a clash between former UFC and TUF veteran Matt Mitrion and Emelianenko was process of being finalized for a Bealltor event early next year. No confirmation has yet to recieved by Bellator officials as of press time.

Emelianenko (36-4) most recently competed against Brazilian striker Fabio Maldonado at an EFN event in Russia earlier this Summer that went the distance. While the decision was wildly contraversial, Fedor garnered the majority decision victory. Fedor also competed at Rizen FF’s second event last year in December against Singh Jaideep. Prior to that match-up, Fedor hadn’t competed in three years. Fedor has competed in multiple MMA organizations such as Strikeforce, Affliction, Rizin and Pride.

Mitrione (11-5, 2-0 in Bellator) has competed in two bouts under the Bellator banner since leaving the UFC and has won both bouts by knockout. Both wins came against Carl Seumanutafa and Oli Thompson. Mitrione has won 10 of his 11 victories by way of knockout or (T)KO.

BREAKING: Chael Sonnen to return to MMA, signs with Bellator

Bellator scores the “Bad Guy”.

In one of the more shocking signings of the past couple of years, Chael Sonnen has parted ways with the UFC and is heading to rival promotion Bellator MMA. News of the signing was confirmed by MMAFighing after an initial report by The Associated Press.

Sonnen (29-14-1), who is  39 years old, has not competed since his November, 2013 loss to Rashad Evans. He recently served a two-year suspension handed by the Nevada Athletic Commission for failing multiple drug tests in 2014.

Sonnen told The MMA Hour in July that he was interested in fighting again and had officially entered the UFC’s USADA drug testing pool.

“I definitely have that itch,” Sonnen said. “I fantasize about it. But it’s one step at a time. I’m not holding back from you. I’m not acting like my return is some kind of breaking news. I’d tell it to you right now. But I have to pass this first test, quite frankly. It’s still out there. I’ve gotta pass it. If I pass that, I’ll pass all of them. But I have to know that everything is out. Boom, step one down.”

 

Sonnen went 6-5 in his time as a UFC fighter and competed for both the UFC Middlweight and Light Heavyweight championships and faced the likes of Demian Maia, Yushin Okami, Nate Marquardt, Michael Bisping, Shogun Rua, Rashad Evans, Jon Jones, and of course a well documented rivalry with Anderson Silva.

With Chael Sonnen still being one of the most prolific fighters to ever step in the cage, this makes this signing one of the biggest for Bellator this year, after major signings such as Benson Henderson, and Rory Macdonald.

Result: Eddie Alvarez dethrones Dos Anjos for the UFC Lightweight championship

It was a storybook finish for Eddie Alvarez. After a decorated career with Bellator as their longtime reigning champion, Eddie Alvarez is now your new UFC Lightweight champion.

Rafael dos Anjos met Eddie Alvarez Thursday night and was met with one of the greatest onslaughts ever witnessed in a championship fight. After landinga BIG right hand that wobbled the champion, Alvarez threw everything he had in an all-out attempt to claim gold. Alvarez then leaped in with a huge knee, but this allowed Dos Anjos to land on top. With ninety seconds left and back to his feet, the former Bellator star would not be denied as he continued to pursue the finish with heinous punches from every direction leaving dos Anjos very little time to react at all, which ultimately left referee Herb Dean no choice but to stop the bout, and just like that a new champion was crowned.

With this historic title win, Eddie Alvarez becomes the first fighter in MMA history to have won a title in both Bellator and the UFC.

Former Bellator Lightweight champ Will Brooks signs with the UFC, faces Ross Pearson at TUF 23 Finale

Former Bellator Lightweight champion Will Brooks has signed a six-fight deal with the UFC and will face Season TUF 9 winner Ross Pearson at “The Ultimate Fighter 23” finale on July 8, a UFC official confirmed the news to MMAJunkie Wednesday.

Brooks (18-1, 9-1 in Bellator) is a former Bellator Lightweight champion that never even lost his title. The reigning champ of the promotion since 2014, Brooks defended his Lightweight title twice against Marcin Held and Dave Jansen and defeated Bellator star Michael Chandler twice to win the undisputed and interim titles. Bellator MMA had recently waived all negotiating rights with Brooks upon releasing the American Top Team fighter last month.

Pearson (19-10,  11-7 in UFC) has intervaled between wins and losses across his last eight fights. Having lost to Diego Sanchez, Al Iaquinta, Evan Dunham and Francisco Trinaldo, while garnering wins against Gray Matnard, Sam Stout, Paul Feleder and Chad Laprise. Pearson holds seven wins by way of  knockout and five by way of submission.

MMA Discussion Podcast – Episode 95 (Muhammad Ali, UFC 199, Ariel Helwani, Kimbo Slice)

Hosts John Franklin and Nick Peralta fond over the life and career of Boxing great Muhammad Ali, review UFC 199, discuss the Ariel Helwani controversy, and talk about the unfortunate and untimely passing of MMA icon Kimbo Slice

Report: Kimbo Slice hospitalized in “dire situation”

Bellator Heavyweight and former Boxer Kimbo Slice (aka Kevin Ferguson) was reportedly hospitalized near his native home in Coral Springs, Florida on Monday afternoon.

Law enforcement was the on scene, which hints at the possibility of foul play. TMZ was first to report on scene and cited multiple sources stating “the situation does not look good. ”

More on this story here on MMAOutsiders.com as it develops.

Kimbo Slice is scheduled to face James Thompson in a main event rematch at Bellator 158 in London, England and is currently serving a 90-day suspension from the Texas State Athletic commission.

MMA Discussion Podcast – Episode 94 (Mayweather vs. McGregor, Nate Diaz, UFC Fight Night 88 Preview)

On the 94th episode of the MMA Discussion podcast, hosts John Franklin and Nick Peralta further discuss the growing saga that is Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor, where Nate Diaz fits in to it all, preview UFC Fight Night 88 on Sunday, and discuss Venator Fighting Championship, Jason Mayhem Miller, the UFC’s future and much more!

MMA Outsider’s Men’s rankings update – May 17th, 2016

Heavyweight

1. Stipe Miocic +5
2. Fabricio Werdum -1
3. Cain Velasquez -1
4. Alistair Overeem +1
5. Junior Dos Santos -1
6. Ben Rothwell
7. Andrei Arlovski
8. Mark Hunt
9. Travis Browne
10. Josh Barnett
Light Heavyweight

1. Jon Jones
2. Daniel Cormier
3. Anthony Johnson
4. Alexander Gustafsson
5. Ryan Bader
6. Glover Teixeira
7. Phil Davis
8. Rashad Evans
9. Ovince St. Preux
10. Liam McGeary

Middleweight

1. Luke Rockhold
2. Chris Weidman
3. Yoel Romero
4. Jacare Souza
5. Michael Bisping
6. Anderson Silva
7. Lyoto Machida
8. Vitor Belfort
9. Gegard Mousasi
10. David Branch

Welterweight

1. Robbie Lawler
2. Rory Macdonald
3. Stephen Thompson
4. Johny Hendricks
5. Demian Maia +2
6. Tyron Woodley -1
7. Carlos Condit -1
8. Neil Magny
9. Matt Brown
10. Ben Askren

Lightweight

1. Rafael dos Anjos
2. Donald Cerrone
3. Khabib Nurmagomedov
4. Tony Ferguson
5. Eddie Alvarez
6. Gilbert Melendez
7. Nate Diaz
8. Edson Barboza
9. Will Brooks
10. Anthony Pettis

Featherweight

1. Conor McGregor
2. Jose Aldo
3. Frankie Edgar
4. Chad Mendes
5. Max Holloway
6. Charles Oliveira
7. Cub Swanson
8. Ricardo Lamas
9. Daniel Straus
10. Jeremy Stephens

Bamtamweight

1. Dominick Cruz
2. TJ Dillashaw
3. Renan Barao
4. Urijah Faber
5. Aljamain Sterling
6. Thomas Almeida
7. Marlon Moraes
8. Raphael Assuncao
9. Michael McDonald
10. Bibiano Fernandes

Flyweight

1. Demetrious Johnson
2. Joseph Benavidez
3. John Dodson
4. Henry Cejudo
5. Jussier Formiga
6. Ian McCall
7. Kyoji Horiguchi
8. John Moraga
9. Louis Smolka
10. Wilson Reis

Alexis Dufresne replaces injured Julia Budd in Bellator Featherweight title fight against Marloes Coenen

Unfortunate news hit Tuesday morning as Julia Budd (8-2, 2-0 in Bellator) has suffered an unknown injury that has forced her from the inaugural  women’s Featherweight championship bout with Marloes Coenen (23-6, 2-0 in Bellato) at Bellator 155.

She will now be replaced by former UFC fighter Alexis Dufresne (5-2) who will also be making her debut for Bellator. Dufresne fought as a Bantamweight while competing in the UFC but competed as a Featherweight and 150 lbs Catchweight bouts prior to competing in the Octagon.

Coenen, who is a  former Strikeforce champion and Invicta FC title challenger, enters the bout on a 4-1 run, which includes recent submission victories over Annalisa Bucci and Arlene Blencowe in her first two Bellator bouts. A fight prior, the 35-year-old Dutch fighter and 16-year pro suffered an Invicta FC title loss Cristiane “Cyborg” Justino.

Bellator 155 takes place May 20 at CenturyLink Arena in Boise. The main card airs on Spike following prelims on SpikeTV.com

The rest of the card features:

MAIN CARD (Spike, 9 p.m. ET)

  • Champ Rafael Carvalho vs. Melvin Manhoef – for Middleweight title
  • Pat Curran vs. Georgi Karakhanyan
  • Dan Charles vs. Augusto Sakai
  • Marcin Held vs. Dave Jansen
  • Joey Beltran vs. Chase Gormley

PRELIMINARY CARD (SpikeTV.com, 6:30 p.m. ET)

  • Alexis Defresne vs. Marloes Coenen – for W. Featherweight title
  • Tyler Freeland vs. Joe Hamilton
  • Veta Arteaga vs. Jackie Vandenburgh
  • Hamilton Ash vs. Vince Morales
  • Casey Johnson vs. Brendon Raftery
  • Scott Thometz vs. Josh Tyler
  • Will Noland vs. Sean Powers
  • Erick Cronkhite vs. Ricky Steele
  • Olly Bradstreet vs. Jesse Brock

Fights to watch in the month of May

As we march full speed ahead into the heart of the Spring season, we begin our ascent into the beckoning months that are sure to deliver us some of the best events and fights out of the whole year. This May we will see some amazing fights involving legends, future stars and high level talent in today’s time as they engage in bouts that are sure to effect the landscape of MMA before this years end. Here are the fights you can not miss this month:

Phil Davis vs. King Mo (Bellator 154, May 14th)

In one of the first feature blockbuster match-ups that we will see this year, Light Heavyweight’s Phil Davis and Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal will do battle in San Jose with the winner going on to face current champion Liam McGeary for the title later on this year. There are huge stakes in this match-up and both men face in each other arguably the most challenging opposition in their careers. Phil Davis, a former UFC veteran, is coming off a very successful debut night with Bellator last Fall as he won a one-night 4-man Light Heavyweight tournament to earn the chance at the crown. However, Davis was supposed to meet “King Mo” Lawal in the finals but a minor injury forced the former Strikeforce champion out of the one-night tournament leaving Davis to go on to meet the tournament alternate Francis Carmont. Davis came away with two big finishes and two big wins that night. King Mo has since participated in another tournament under the new Japanese promotion Rizin Fighting Federation where he defeated three Heavyweights from Europe and Bellator in a 48-hour time span, finishing two of those fights by knockout. This is by far one of the most intriguing and explosive match-ups that could be made in Bellator’s Light Heavyweight division that doesn’t involve their champion and if both men’s latest exploits inside the cage (and ring) are any indication, this is certainly going to also be one of the more competitive fights we see out of the whole month, if not the whole year.

Livia Renata Souza vs. Angela Hill (Invicta FC 17, May 7th)

Two of Invicta’s fastest growing stars will meet head to head in the co-main event of Invicta FC 17 which will be featured on UFC Fight Pass this weekend. Livia Renata Souza became an overnight success after making her debut in Invicta’s Strawweight division when she defeated Katja Kankaanpaa to win the Invicta FC title. She followed up that huge win with a successful title defense at Invicta FC 15 defeating fellow rising star DeAnna Bennett with a body kick TKO (the first official knockout win of her career). She faces a familiar face to most fans in Angela Hill. Hill of course garnered much popularity in 2014 when she participated in the Ultimate Fighter’s 20th season in a 16-women tournament that would crown the UFC’s inaugural Strawweight champion. Hill was the most inexperienced fighter to compete on the show at 1-0 and lost in the first round to eventual tournament winner and former Invicta Strawweight champion Carla Esparza. She did however capture the hearts of many fans with her sincere and lovable attitude as well as her entertaining and aggressive fighting style. Since joining the Invicta roster this year she has already garnered two highlight reel knockout victories that have earned her this title opportunity and she presents a very credible challenge to the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt ace. A true striker vs. grappler match-up, it will be interesting to see how the undefeated champion deals with a woman so highly skilled on the feet and if she will be able to find her another submission victory to add to her ever-impressive resume.

Marcin Held vs. Dave Jansen (Bellator 155, May 20th)

Bellator’s 155 lbs weight class has long been considered the promotions most stacked division, and at Bellator 155 two of their most talented fighters will look to earn much needed momentum back as former title challengers Dave Jansen and Marcin Held meet. Both Jansen and Held are coming off failed attempts to capture the promotions Lightweight title against current 155 pound king Will Brooks. These men have faced each before back at Bellator 93 in 2013 where Jansen walked away with a unanimous decision victory. Held went on to win six straight following that loss, and currently holds 12 submission victories as well as 4 knockouts out of his 21 total career wins. While Held at age 24, has continued to improve, Jansen has possibly begun his battle with Father-time as he will turn 37 this August. These two Lightweights still represent the best of Lightweight division and will undoubtedly bring us a terrific bout that is sure to top their first go-around three years prior. The winner undoubtedly placing himself firmly back in line for another chance at the title.

Marloes Coenen vs. Julia Budd (Bellator 155, May 20th)

In a bout that will crown the first ever Bellator Women’s Featherweight champion, two of the best 145 pound women on the planet not named Cris “Cyborg” Justino will meet. Long time veteran and former Strikeforce Bantamweight champion Marloes Coenen has gone 4-1 in her last 5 as a Featherweight with her only loss coming to Cris Cyborg back in 2013. Another fellow Strikeforce, Invicta and Bellator veteran Julia Budd has remained near-perfect since her loss to Ronda Rousey back in 2011 and has amassed a six-fight winning streak that has put her alongside Coenen as one of the best Featherweights walking the earth. This is women’s MMA bonanza of a fight that could mean big things for Bellator and that division. Both women represent the best of that weight class and will undoubtedly put on one of the most competitive match-ups you will likely ever see in a women’s MMA match outside of Invicta and in Bellator period.

Aljamain Sterling vs. Bryan Caraway (UFC Fight Night 88, May 29th)

This Bantamweight fight will feature one of the few grudge matches that you will see on this list. It has been well documented over social media (mostly on Aljamain’s end) that the two really don’t like each other, which saw Aljamain calling for a bout with Caraway for the better part of 2015. The fight is now set to go down at UFC Fight Night in Las Vegas at the end of the month and it will be one of the biggest tests for both men. In Sterling, Caraway faces a hungry and talented up and comer who could put a harmful dent in the career of “Kid Lightning” who is slowly nearing a shot at some of the best in his division after going 6-2 since entering the UFC back in 2012. For Sterling, who has dominated all opposition inside the Octagon thus far and remains undefeated at 12-0, a whole lot rides on most fights he takes moving forward especially against the eighth ranked UFC fighter in Caraway.

Albert Tumenov vs. Gunnar Nelson (UFC Fight Fight Night 87, May 8th)

Another high stakes match-up between two very prominent fighters in the UFC’s Welterweight division. Young and hungry Albert Tumenov, who is a Russian Master of Sports in Boxing and 6-1 in the UFC, has made a big name for himself as of late and now faces the biggest name of his career in Gunnar Nelson. Tumenov is currently ranked at 13 in the UFC rankings while Gunnar Nelson, a prolific training partner of Conor McGregor, recently was pushed out of the top 15 rankings after suffering a unanimous decision loss to top ranked contender Demian Maia last Fall. Nelson is still a very dangerous fighter however and presents a challenge most everywhere that the fight takes place. For Tumenov, perfect placement to face a top ten opponent awaits him should he earn a sixth straight victory giving him plenty of motivation to win convincingly in this fight. Equally as important for Nelson is this bout as he will be looking to get back to his winning ways and back into the rankings of the Welterweight division as well as avoiding the first losing streak of his career.

Renan Barao vs. Jeremy Stephens (UFC Fight Night 88, May 29th)

Former UFC Bantamweight champion Renan Barao will be making his return to the Octagon at the end of the month and will be doing so in a new weight class. Following the end of his Bantamweight run, Barao was heavily critical of his own weight cut to 135 pounds citing the strain it was having on his body. Leading up to UFC 177 back in 2014, Barao was set to rematch TJ Dillashaw in the main event but was forced to pull out less than 48 hours from the event due to dehydration that caused Barao to lose consciousness prior to weigh-ins. Now dedicating a move on up a weight class, the former Bantamweight champion looks to make a big statement in his debut at 145 against Jeremy “Lil Heathen” Stephens. Stephens is by no means an easy task however as his status as the UFC’s ninth ranked fighter suggests. A win for Barao here would signify a huge splash to the Featherweight’s elite pool of fighters while a Stephens win would further propel him up the rankings towards a possible match-up with another contender that could potentially have title implications. A great match-up overall as well as both men are historically ferocious finishers.

Alistair Overeem vs. Andrei Arlovski (UFC Fight Night 87, May 8th)

Simply put, this is one of the most exciting Heavyweight match-ups we may see all year. Both men have long since cemented a legacy for themselves in this sport as two of the best Heavyweights to every wrap up the 8 oz gloves. Yet both men still desire a taste of gold one last time before reaching that dreaded downward slope in their careers. For these two Heavyweights, this fight could potentially lead to either. Both men possess the power and skill to finish the fight at any given moment and go into this fight knowing the incredible odds at stake given their placement in the division. With Overeem on the cusp of a title shot, and Arlovski on the verge of irrelevancy in the title picture with one more loss, the tension when these men engage following the opening bell will be incredible.

Thomas Almeida vs. Cody Garbrandt (UFC Fight Night 88, May 29th)

Two undefeated, ranked Bantamweights with 23 knockouts out of 29 combined fights between them….If that isn’t enough to get you excited for this match-up I don’t know what to tell you.

UFC 198

Look, here’s all you need to know. Order this pay-per-view. This main card has it all and then some…and then some more on top of it. Fabricio Werdum defending the title against Stipe Miocic, Anderson Silva taking on fellow phenomenal striker Uriah Hall, two of the most dangerous Middleweigihts walking the planet Earth in Vitor Belfort and “Jacare” Souza, Cris “Cyborg” FINALLY making her UFC debut, and “Shogun” Rua continuing to remain a factor in the Light Heavyweight division against up and coming talent in Corey Anderson. And that’s only the main card. The preliminaries are littered with many high profile match-ups also. Brazil is certainly getting a lot of love from the UFC this month and as long as your eyes are drawn to this card on May 14th, I’m sure these fighters will be looking to give you the same.