Bellator 198: Pride Never Die
Bellator 198 featured one of the most anticipated bouts in their heavyweight tournament with their main event between Fedor Emelianenko and Frank Mir. “The Last Emperor” had a rough outing when he fought Matt Mitrione at Bellator’s New York City event last June when he was knocked out by Matt Mitrione whose also in the tournament and advanced last February. The chatter was that Emelianenko was risking losing his legacy by entering this tournament; they would be proven wrong at Bellator 198.
Frank Mir shredded almost 40 pounds for this fight and still had a weight advantage to go with his grappling pedigree and improved striking game. When the opening bell rang and the two former champions engaged it seemed Mir had the edge right off the bat landing first and pressuring Emelianenko against the cage. Mir seemed to stun the Russian at one point where it looked as if a finish was looming. However, when clinching something happened that sparked all of the former Pride FC Heavyweight Champion’s highlight reels in the minds of longtime fans, a quick hip toss seemingly out of nowhere turned the tide.
Mir remained calm. Being the stronger grappler he was able to recover and get back on his feet so he could right that wrong. He would not get the chance, just as it seemed he was going to deliver some payback Emelianenko was backing up, inviting Mir’s onslaught when he would step out of range to deliver a counter left uppercut right on the chin of the former UFC champion that would send him to the canvas. Mir was noticeably stunned and Emelianenko took advantage of the opportunity to get the finish in the first round.
One of the things fans seem to have forgotten is that when Emelianenko has been in trouble in the past, he seems to pull off a win at that point, and that is one of the things that make him the legend he is. If he doesn’t dominate from the opening bell, he makes it seem like he is losing right up until he wins.
Emelianenko advances in the tournament to face Chael Sonnen in the semifinals.
Bellator 198: Fedor vs. Mir Results:
Fedor Emelianenko (37-5, 1 NC) defeated Frank Mir (18-12) via TKO (punches) at :48 of round one
Emmanuel Sanchez (17-3) defeated Sam Sicilia (16-9) via submission (arm-triangle choke) at 3:52 of round one
Rafael Lovato Jr. (8-0) defeated Gerald Harris (25-6) via submission (armbar) at 1:11 of round one
Neiman Gracie (8-0) defeated Javier Torres (10-4, 1 NC) via submission (arm-triangle choke) at 3:18 of round two
Dillon Danis (1-0) defeated Kyle Walker (2-5) via submission (toe hold) at 1:38 of round one
R’Mandel Cameron (6-3) defeated P.J. Cajigas (6-7) via unanimous decisión (29-28 x3)
Mark Stoddard (16-9) defeated Dan Stittgen (12-6) via submission (triangle choke) at 4:43 of round one
Eric Wisely (29-9-1) defeated Morgan Sickinger (20-11) via submission (armbar) at 1:12 of round one
Joey Diehl (12-9) defeated Nate Williams (27-18) via submission (triangle choke) at 54 seconds of round one
Asef Askar (1-0-1) and Andrew Johnson (0-0-1) fought to a majority draw (28-27, 28-28, 28-28)
Adil Benjilany (4-1, 1 NC) defeated Corey Jackson (3-1) via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)
Sultan Umar (6-2) defeated Tom Angeloff (7-6, 1 NC) via unanimous decision (30-26, 30-27, 30-27)
Robert Morrow (24-21-1) defeated Adam Maciejewski (13-7-1) via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Photos: Courtesy of Bellator MMA