01-14-15. By JP Scarano, Exclusively for TheFightWorld.Com
Everyone in MMA is talking about the UFC Fight Night 59 event this Sunday in Boston but I think we are forgetting about Belltor MMA and WSOF, as well. These are the number 2 and 3 promotions in the US today. I know the UFC in Boston is going to be huge and it’s on a Sunday which is really rare but the fact that we aren’t talking about Bellator MMA and WSOF is not cool to me. I am going to correct that now.
Bellator MMA 132 is in Temecula, California at the Pechanga Casino Resort and is airing on SpikeTV. This is Bellator’s first card of the new year. In this card we have a co-main and main event in the Featherweight divisions and all 4 of these men are looking to gain something.
In the co-main event we have Georgi Karakhanyan returning after being released 4 years ago. Since then he has made a name for himself having won and become the first WSOF World Featherweight Champion. With a record of 23-4-1 Karakhanyan is looking to get a rematch with the current Featherweight champion, Patricio Freire, in order to avenge one of his losses and become champion again. Before that can happen Karakhanyan has to take on Bubba Jenkins who is on a tear with a record of 8-1 and 5-1 in Bellator MMA. He seems ready to go up in the ranks and get his shot at the title. Jenkins is looking to make this his year and become a champion and to prove that he is one. However, this will be Jenkins toughest test to date.
In the main event for the Bellator MMA World Featherweight Championship we have current champion Patricio Freire defending his title for the first time against former champion, Daniel Straus. Both these men have fought once before when Bellator MMA was hosting their tournaments. Freire beat Straus in the finals of the tournament by Unanimous Decision. Freire has won 2 tournaments and came close 2 times to becoming champion. In his third attempt he beat the current champion, Pat Curran, to gain the title of Bellator MMA World Featherweight Champion. Freire is looking to retain his championship for a long time and this will be his first step in preserving his title.
Daniel Straus is looking forward to both take the title back and avenge his loss to Freire back in May 21, 2011. Since that loss Straus went on a 6-fight winning streak to get a shot at then champion, Pat Curran. That was a rematch from dating back to when they both were starting out in MMA. That fight was a real war and it was Straus who took the UD and the title that night. In ther 3rd rematch Curran beat Straus by submission to reclaim the title. Both of these men are looking to be the best in this division and when they fight this Friday night we will see who will come out on top to claim the title.
WSOF 17 is happening this Saturday night, January 17th, at the Planet Hollywood Resort and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada. This is starting to look like the card to talk about with title shots written all over it. I am really starting to like the WSOF and how they don’t just have title matches all the time in the main events. They are also letting other fighters demonstrate their desire to move up the ranks and prove why they are there.
The co-main event of the evening is in the Lightweight division where Brian Cobb is looking to get back on the winning side and start his new year right by taking on undefeated Jonathan Nunez. Nunez has looked really good in his last two fights in WSOF and is making his way towards a title shot soon himself.
In the main event we have Brian Foster taking on Jake Shields. Both of these fighters are UFC vets who are looking to make their way back to that promotion. They want to prove they are championship-worthy and both men want a shot at the WSOF title first.
Foster is a tough fighter with a 4-fight winning streak and looks to increase his steak to 5 by beating one of the best Welterweights in the world in Shields. Now if you don’t know who Shields is here is a brief background for you.
Shields is a grappling specialist and one of the most dangerous men to come into MMA by winning 4 titles. And with a record of 30-7-1(1) he isn’t one to be overlooked at all.
If either one of these fighters win on Saturday night they could be the next in line to take on the current WSOF World Welterweight Champion, Rousimar Palhares, later on this year.
Who do you fans have winning this weekend ?
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