With an incredible four big time MMA events taking place this weekend, it is astonishing to think that the biggest of them all, Bellator 145, will be happening first. The event will be headlined by a pair of title bouts as Patricio Freire defends the featherweight belt against Daniel Straus and Will Brooks defends the lightweight gold against Marcin Held. Also, Michael Chandler faces David Branch and Bobby Lashley faces James Thompson in a pair of rematch bouts.
Bellator MMA Featherweight Title Fight
Patricio â€œPitbullâ€ Freire (24-2-0) (Champion) vs. Daniel Straus (23-6-0-1NC)
Freire will be making the third defense of his championship, last defending it against Daniel Weichel at Bellator 138. Straus is a former Bellator MMA Featherweight Champion, having defeated then champion Pat Curran for the belt at Bellator 106. Freire has already defeated Straus twice under the Bellator MMA banner, with those wins coming at Bellator 45 and Bellator 132. Straus has rotated wins and losses in his last five Bellator MMA appearances, with his last bout being a win over Henry Corrales at Bellator 138. Straus is more than capable of taking the title from Freire, but Freire has shown to be the comeback kid since winning the gold, Freire eventually drops Straus with strikes in the fourth round to keep the gold.
Bellator MMA Lightweight Title Fight
â€œIllâ€ Will Brooks (16-1-0) (Champion) vs. Marcin Held (21-3-0)
Brooks will be making the third defense of his championship, last defending it against Dave Jansen at Bellator 136. Held earned a shot at the championship after winning the final Bellator MMA Lightweight Tournament, defeating Patricky Freire in the finals. Brooks has only suffered one defeat since turning pro, which came to Saad Awad via knockout at Bellator 91. Since coming over to Bellator MMA a little over four years ago, Held has defeated a pair of UFC veterans in Rich Clementi and Philippe Nover. Brooks strength comes with his wrestling and grounding his opponent, which plays right in Helds games plan with his submissions, Held eventually catches Brooks on the ground with one of his leg locks to capture the championship.
Bellator MMA Featherweight Division Fight
Justin â€œThe American Kidâ€ Lawrence (8-2-0) vs. Emmanuel â€œEl Matadorâ€ Sanchez (11-2-0)
Lawrence is a UFC veteran who is currently undefeated in Bellator MMA, having defeated Sean Wilson by TKO at Bellator 138. Sanchez has won three of four fights under the Bellator MMA banner, with the lone loss coming to former featherweight champion Pat Curran. Sanchezâ€™s game is to strike with his opponent and Lawrence is one of the best strikers in all of Bellator MMA, Lawrence eventually drops Sanchez with strikes in the first to get the win.
Bellator MMA Lightweight Division Fight
â€œIronâ€ Michael Chandler (13-3-0) vs. David â€œThe Cavemanâ€ Rickels (16-3-0-1NC)
Chandler won the initial meeting between the two back at Bellator 97 by knockout, it would mark the final time Chandler defended his lightweight title. Rickels has won two of four since the first meeting with Chandler and he iscoming off of a controversial no contest against UFC veteran John Alessio at Bellator 139. Chandler has seemingly regained his form since dropping the lightweight gold last year, Chandler blasts Rickels with strikes for another TKO victory.
Bellator MMA Heavyweight Division Fight
Bobby â€œThe Dominatorâ€ Lashley (13-2-0) vs. James â€œThe Colossusâ€ Thompson (20-14-0-1NC)
Lashley has won all three of his previous bouts in Bellator MMA, most notably defeating Dan Charles by TKO at Bellator 138. Thompson was the victor in the first fight against Lashley, which came via a controversial decision at Super Fight League III. Thomspn will be returning to action after a year-plus absence, Lashley quickly grounds and pounds Thomspon on route to getting a first round finish.
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