Love MMA but hate yourself? Then Bellator 121 was the card for you.
Bellator pulled a last-second switcheroo on fans on Friday. It moved Eric Prindle vs. James Thompson into the co-main event slot and elevated 2014 Summer Series light heavyweight tournament bout Austen Heidlage vs. Philipe Lins into the main event.
Lins, to his credit, proved that he deserved the extra exposure. The Nova Uniao product displayed some formidable Brazilian jiu-jitsu and demonstrated serious strength by maintaining a standing back mount for well over a minute. Eventually, he managed to get a tight, crushing rear-naked choke and forced Heidlage to tap.
Prindle vs. Thompson, however, proved to be a "colossal" disappointment (See what I did there?). While the bout was pitched as two big dudes who were going to head-butt each other and play reauchambeau until they couldn't stand up anymore, Prindle came just short of throwing the fight as he simply turtled and awaited defeat after Thompson scored a takedown in the opening seconds.
The fight was partly redeemed, however, when Thompson took the microphone during the post-fight speech and called out Cheick Kongo. He did so, by the way, by launching into a ridiculous tirade involving numerous references to the male anatomy (I am not joking).
In the card's other bout that made fans say "wait, who is fighting?" Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou utterly embarrassed Terry Davinney. The Pride and UFC veteran took the paunchy, beer-loving, probably-should-be-fighting-at-170-pounds light heavyweight down early in the fight, roughed him up with punches and finished him with a rear-naked choke (which is the first submission victory of his silly career).
Who do you want to see Thompson face next?
In addition to that wackiness, the other two bouts in the opening round of the Summer Series light heavyweight tournament also went down.
Egidijus Valavicius took a narrow decision win over Carlos Eduardo in a generally unremarkable fight. Kelly Anundson, meanwhile, took a simple, clean unanimous decision win over Rodney Wallace.
That sets up the tournament's two semifinal bouts, which will see Valavicius face Liam McGeary (who advanced to the semifinals by beating Mike Mucitelli at Bellator 119) and Anundson face Lins.
The full results are as follows, per MMAFighting.com:
- Austen Heidlage vs. Philipe Lins
- James Thompson def. Eric Prindle via TKO (punches) at 1:55 of Round 1
- Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou def. Terry Davinney via submission (rear-naked choke) at 4:16 of Round 1
- Egidijus Valavicius def. Carlos Eduardo via split decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28)
- Kelly Anundson def. Rodney Wallace via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)
- Joe Vedepo def. Cortez Coleman via majority decision (28-28, 29-27, 29-27)
- Stephen Banaszak vs. Treston Thomison
- William Florentino def. Guillermo Martinez Ayme via split decision (28-29, 30-27, 29-28)
- Steve Garcia def. Cody Walker via first-round KO (0:39)
- Bubba McDaniel def. Matt Jones via unanimous decision (30-26, 30-27, 30-27)
- Ray Sloan def. Jamelle Jones via submission (rear-naked choke) at :48 of Round 1