Bellator 23 Set for June 24 in Louisville: Kentucky hosts first major MMA event

Jesse MotiffSenior Analyst IJune 1, 2010

Bellator Fighting Championships announced today that it will bring the much-anticipated conclusion of its second season to Louisville, Kentucky on June 24.

The show will feature featherweight and middleweight tournament final fights. It will also mark the first major MMA event to take place in Kentucky.

In the finals of the featherweight tournament, Joe Warren (4-1) will face the undefeated Patricio "Pitbull" Freire (14-0). 

Warren is a former NCAA All-American wrestler as well as a Greco-Roman world champion. Freire is a Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt that has submitted half of his opponents in his career.

The winner of the fight will receive a title shot later in the year against the current featherweight champion, Joe Soto.

The finals of the middleweight tournament will see Bryan Baker (13-1) match up against Alexander Shlemenko (29-4). 

Baker, a veteran of WEC, has won his last seven fights. In fact, his only career loss is to the current No. 1 contender in the UFC's middleweight division, Chael Sonnen. 

Shlemenko has won 14 of his last 15 fights, with the only loss coming to Jordan Radev by knockout last October.

As with the featherweight tournament, the winner of the middleweight finals will face the current champion later in the year. Hector Lombard, the Bellator middleweight champion, will face the winner at a yet to be determined event.

Bellator has enjoyed a great second season of fights, and the finals will be aired live on Fox Sports Net. Season three of fights will begin on August 12 in Hollywood, Florida.



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