Bellator 93 Results: The Real Winners and Losers from Jansen vs. Held
Things didn't go exactly as planned for Bellator at the Androscoggin Bank Colisée in Lewiston, Maine. The scheduled main event, a welterweight tournament final between Ben Saunders and Douglas Lima, had to be postponed after Lima broke his hand. Another high-profile television fight, this one between Brett Rogers and Eric Prindle, was also cancelled at the last minute when Prindle was forced to pull out due to an injury.
That left Dave Jansen and Marcin Held as the last two men standing. The two had actually been scheduled to compete for a shot at lightweight champion Michael Chandler last September after the bout was unexpectedly cancelled when the 20-year-old Held was prohibited from entering the Horseshoe Hammond Casino in Hammond, Ind.
Jansen made up for lost time in Maine, negating Held's dangerous leglock submissions and outworking him on the way to a unanimous decision. It may have taken six months longer than planned, and his Season 7 tournament win may have actually occurred in Season 8 but the victory earned the 33-year-old wrestler, now 20-2, a shot at Chandler's Bellator title, making him the night's clear winner.
But Jansen wasn't the evening's only winner, and Held wasn't the sole loser. And, crazily enough, sometimes in mixed martial arts a fighter can be both at the same time by winning a fight but doing so in a lackluster fashion that costs the athlete the support of both fans and promoters.
So who were the real winners and losers on Thursday? Click on to find out.
Loser: Travis Wiuff
Travis Wiuff wasn't supposed to lose to Ryan Martinez. After all, Wiuff was the former UFC and Pride competitor. Wiuff was the first and only Yamma champion. Wiuff was the guy with 85 pro fights. And, most telling?
He was the only guy with a Wikipedia entry.
Unfortunately, all that experience came at a heavy price for Wiuff. He's taken a beating in those 85 fights and simply doesn't have it any more. Martinez, a hungry 25-year-old from Colorado who has been training with "King" Mo Lawal and Roy Nelson, took advantage, landing a hard left on Wiuff's glass jaw and likely earning a shot at Bellator's next heavyweight tournament.
Losers: Waachiim Spiritwolf and Marcus Davis
I admit to being a little biased here. I consider Spiritwolf a friend and a true class act. While some are questioning the legitimacy of his injury, I don't think that's fair. Spiritwolf is a warrior who would fight a rabid badger over a chunk of day-old ham sandwich if push came to shove.
After the bout, Davis added fuel to the fire, loudly proclaiming his strike to be a legal blow. I can only imagine that's the decade of head trauma speaking. He clearly hit Spiritwolf low and hard.
Sure, we've seen lots of fighters get up from a low blow and continue to scrap. But if Spiritwolf were lying on the mat, I can only believe Davis' knee did some serious damage to his groin.
"You're only as tough as your eyes and your balls"-Bobby Heenan— Matt Saccaro (@MattSaccaro) March 22, 2013
It's the kind of thing that just seems to happen to Spiritwolf, who once had a Strikeforce fight stopped due to an inadvertent eye poke. I hope the two get the chance to run it back. It had the makings of a fun fight before the unfortunate end.
Winner and Loser: Michael Page
Fights on the undercard went seven for seven—seven fights and seven submissions or knockouts. Leading the way was Michael "Venom" Page, a 25-year-old British kickboxing prospect with loads of potential and no small measure of swagger.
Page knocked out hometown fighter Ryan Sanders in just 10 seconds, landing a glancing right hand that dropped his opponent. Rather than swoop in for the kill, Page calmly walked away, leaving the referee to stop the fight.
Afterward, now at 4-0 in his MMA career, Page mugged for the cameras and looked in amazement at his own right hand. Quite a nice debut for a fighter worth watching—I suspect we'll see him again real soon.
But fans on Twitter weren't quite ready to buy into the new star. Critics thought his knockout punch, which grazed Sanders, looked a little suspicious. Too good to be true? Some seemingly thought so, including a pair of prominent journalists:
— Ariel Helwani (@arielhelwani) March 22, 2013
HAH, another dive on Bellator... the crowd is beginning to question it and boo, even...— Word On The Street (@TheAntJimmyShow) March 22, 2013
@nyid07 Also, the sweet spot on his chin starts several centimetres away from his actual body.— Lactor: Acid Monster (@AcidicLactor) March 22, 2013
That fight baaarely landed.— Brent Brookhouse (@brentbrookhouse) March 22, 2013
Bellator 93 Main Card Results
Dave Jansen defeated Marcin Held by decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28).
Ryan Martinez defeated Travis Wiuff by knockout (punches), Round 1.
Marcus Davis fought Waachim Spiritwolf to a no-contest when Spiritwolf was kneed in the groin
Michael Page defeated Ryan Sanders by knockout (right hand), Round 1.
Jason Butcher defeated Jack Hermansson by submission (triangle), Round 1.
Dave Vitkay defeated Jesse Peterson by submission (guillotine choke), Round 1.