Photo credit: Upper Brazil
Division: Bantamweight (for the Bellator bantamweight championship)
Result: Eduardo Dantas def. Marcos Galvao by KO, 3:01, Rd. 2
In keeping with the namesake of this North Carolina venue, Dantas was delectable like a Bojangles biscuit Thursday night. But he was also bittersweet, like a, uh, Sierra Mist, when the syrup runs out but they haven't figured it out yet.
In the early going against training partner Galvao, Dantas was downright blurry, firing his jab like a sports-car piston. Ultimately, though, it was a relatively tentative affair on both sides.
The second round saw Dantas open up with kicks and larger shots while staying clear of Galvao's hot zone. About halfway through the frame, Dantas dropped his friend and mentor with a right uppercut.
A few final hammerfists sent Galvao into unconsciousness. About a minute after the stoppage, the camera found Dantas sitting back, weeping, against the cage.
These two Nova Uniao colleagues set an interesting example Thursday night for some of the sport's larger stars, who steadfastly refuse to fight teammates because it would upset their interpersonal constitutions. This one was ugly. But they did it, and they should both be commended for that.
And finally, the fight was just as important to Bellator as it was to Dantas, following Dantas's momentum-killing loss to non-Bellatorian Tyson Nam last year. This re-established Dantas as a marketable commodity.
Up next for Dantas? Honestly? I have no idea. Presumably, Season 9 of Bellator will include a bantamweight tournament. They need one.