By TXMMA Staff | Photo by Sherdog
Bellator 97 Results – Champions Michael Chandler and Ben Askren Defend; Rampage Jackson vs. Tito Ortiz Announced For November
Bellator MMA put on arguably their largest event of the year last night with Bellator 97 taking place at the Santa Ana Center in Rio Rancho, N.M. with the main card airing LIVE on Spike TV.
With a stacked card featuring two title fights Bellator 97 also featured a major announcement with Quinton “Rampage” Jackson announcing his first match with the company, a planned November 2 PPV superfight with fellow UFC exile Tito Ortiz. That event is supposed to happen at the Long Beach Convention Center in Southern California, an area where both longtime veterans have long since been based out of.
As for Bellator 97, younger up-and-coming champions than those were featured on the card, and delivered as far as performances go.
In the main event, it took lightweight champion Michael Chandler all of 44 seconds, a few jabs, and a thundering right hand to knock out challenger David Rickels in the featured fight of the evening. With a new long-term contract recently inked with Bellator MMA, we guess Chandler was looking to make them feel good about their investment.
Meanwhile in the co-main event, welterweight champ “Funky” Ben Asken defended his belt for the fourth time against previously undefeated Russian Andrey Koreshkov. The TV commentators kept repeating how the Russian striker didn’t bring in any wrestlers to help him with this camp and it showed, as he was completely shut down and blanketed on the mat en route to the fourth round TKO stoppage.
Also at Bellator 94, “King Mo” Muhammed Lawal soundly defeated Jacob Noe to win Bellator’s “Summer Series” light heavyweight tournament while Vitaly Minakov moved one step closer to winning the heavyweight title courtesy of a stoppage win over Ryan Martinez.
Last but not least on the main card, Patricio “Pitbull” Freire was able to successfully come back from his split decision loss to Pat Curran this past January (Bellator 85) to defeat Jared Downing with a one punch knockout in the first televised fight of the night. With losses only to Bellator champs (Curran, Joe Warren) in his 20-fight career so far, Freire will be heading into the Season 9 featherweight tournament (coming this fall) looking to drop more heads and finally get over the hump.
Bellator 97 Quick Results from July 31, 2013
MAIN CARD (Spike TV)
Michael Chandler over David Rickels by KO (punches) – RD1, 0:44 – to defend lightweight title
Ben Askren over Andrey Koreshkov by TKO (punches) – RD4, 2:58 – to defend welterweight title
Muhammed Lawal over Jacob Noe by verbal submission (punches) – RD3, 2:51 – light-heavyweight tournament final
Vitaly Minakov over Ryan Martinez by TKO (punches) – RD3, 4:02 – heavyweight tournament final
Patricio Freire over Jared Downing by TKO (punch) – RD3, 0:54
PRELIMINARY CARD (Spike.com)
Bubba Jenkins over Mike Barreras by TKO (punches) – RD2, 1:05
Anthony Leone over Frank Baca by submission (rear-naked choke) – RD3, 1:07 – bantamweight tournament semifinals
Rafael Silva over Rodrigo Lima by submission (rear-naked choke) – RD3, 2:03 – bantamweight tournament semifinals
Will Brooks over Cris Leyva by TKO (punches) – RD3, 2:20
PRELIMINARY CARD (Untelevised)
Donald Sanchez over Cliff Wright by split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
Adrian Cruz over Felipe Chavez by TKO (strikes) – RD2, 4:24
Javier Palacios over Richard Jacquez by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Shawn Bunch over Russell Wilson by split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
Jeremy Kimball over Keith Berry by KO (strikes) – RD2, 1:45
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