Date: November 19
Venue: Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, Hollywood, Fla.
It may not have known it at the time, but Bellator put on the second-best event of the year just hours before another event took to the pay-per-view airways. However, as long as you had MTV2 as part of your cable or satellite package, you got to watch this bad boy for free.
While seeing Marlon Sandro, Jessica Aguilar and Hector Lombard display their dominance was great to see, it was the lightweight championship bout between reigning champion Eddie Alvarez and Michael Chandler that had people buzzing for weeks.
In theory, Alvarez was supposed to use his takedown defense to keep the fight standing, pick apart Chandler on the feet and either score a TKO victory or an easy unanimous decision. However, to the surprise of nearly everyone, things did not go like that at all.
Chandler was happy to keep the fight in the middle of the cage and trade leather with the much more experienced Alvarez. What was even more surprising than that is the fact that, for the better part, Chandler got the better of the stand-up.
Just as the fight began, Chandler landed a right hand that hurt Alvarez badly. Chandler followed up with more punches, and the referee was moments away from stopping the match before Alvarez was able to recover and land some good punches of his own. Towards the end of the round, Chandler landed another right hand that rocked Alvarez, but the bell may have saved Alvarez.
The second round was very close and could have gone to either fighter. In the third round, Alvarez landed a barrage of punches that nearly had Chandler out, but he was able to hang in there. Then everything changed in the fourth round.
Midway through the fourth round, Chandler landed a right hand that floored Alvarez. From there, Chandler mounted Alvarez, Alvarez gave up his back and Chandler sank in the rear-naked choke and won the title in only his ninth professional bout.