The Fight Report: Bellator 104

| October 18, 2013 | 10:32 am | Reply

Bellator 104 boxTonight’s Bellator 104 is one of the best Bellator cards of the season. The Welterweight tournament will come to a head, while fighters across all weight classes will look to get into the next phase of tournaments, with some recognizable names in the mix.

Let’s check out the action.

War Machine vs. Ron Keslar: With both men having a dominant performance in the first round of fights, War Machine and Ron Keslar will look to battle their way into the finals. War Machine hasn’t looked unbeatable, but he’s shown himself to have a strength and striking advantage over everyone he’s faced thus far and could be too much for Keslar here. A late replacement, Keslar dispatched Melo in the opening round but showed a bit of ring rust at the elite level, which makes me a bit nervous for his chances here against an aggressive fighter like Mr. Machine. It could be a close one if War Machine’s cardio fails him against Kesler’s pressure, but his submission skills are enough to threaten and ultimately stop Keslar midway through the fight.

Brent Weedman vs. Rick Hawn: My favorite fight of the night, karateka Brent Weedman will look get past Rick Hawn at Welterweight, in a rematch of their fight from the Lightweight tournament.  Weedman has always been a dangerous fighter, and the move back to welterweight seems to have helped him in the clinch area, which was previously a weak point in his overall game. The clinch area is Hawn’s best attribute though and with his ever-improving boxing game, this is one I see playing out in similar fashion to the first fight. Weedman can do enough not to lose, but Hawn can control the fight and keep it on his own terms, leading to another decision win.

Kendall Grove vs. Joe Vedepo: A blast from the UFC past, as Kendall Grove takes on Joe Vedepo for a potential middleweight tournament spot. Grove has been on the road for most of his post UFC career, but will look to fight stateside for once against the Iowa wrestler. Vedepo hits like a truck and has a unique blend of wrestling and submission skills, but Grove is a bit more functional standing and has plenty of tricks off his back here. Don’t be surprised if Vedepo guts out a win, but smart money is on Grove tagging the wrestler early in the fight and getting him out of there.

Eric Prindle vs. Peter Graham: Bellator’s heavyweight division is basically toxic to my system, but I could see this fight settling well in my stomach. Prindle is best known for his ridiculous saga with Thiago Santos that ended with lots of crushed testicles and missed fights, but with that all behind him, he’ll look to ice Aussie kickboxing legend Peter Graham. Graham has had resurgence in his career with some hand-picked opposition, and while he has the power to drop anyone, he doesn’t have a complete MMA game. It’s always close when heavyweights are swinging fists, but Prindle has a complete MMA game and should be able to work inside, hit takedowns if needed and pull of a TKO win midway through the fight.

Karl Amoussou vs. Paul Bradley: A fight that will likely determine the next Welterweight tournament spot, Karl Amoussou returns from his failed title bid, taking on UFC vet Paul Bradley. Amoussou is a stone cold killer, having beaten the brakes off of several of Bellator’s finest before running into a brick wall in Askren. On the other hand, Bradley would be Amoussou’s antithesis, as a highly methodical wrestler who does exactly enough to win and seldom wins over fans with his top-heavy style. This one comes down to the fact Bradley will have issues getting Amoussou down and that the judoka is dangerous everywhere the fight goes, leaving many opportunities for the finish against Bradley’s plodding pace. This one should start in the clinch, but Amoussou will create enough breaks in the grind to slug Bradley and send him to the canvas, finishing up with a submission within the first round.

Jared Downing vs. Rob Emerson: The underrated Jared Downing will get enough chance in the Bellator cage after being dispatched by Pitbull, taking on TUF and UFC vet Rob Emerson at Featherweight.  Downing is an outstanding grappler with a great upside and while Pitbull and Lance Palmer had his number, I can’t see Emerson’s point fighting style doing much here. Emerson is a gamer, but with a lack of real power and a major deficit on the mat, Downing should control the bout for a solid decision win.

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Category: Bellator, MMA

About the Author ()

I'm a 20+ year veteran of martial arts and a fan of MMA since UFC 1, when my world was thrown on its head by the budding sport. I'm obsessive in the pursuit of martial abilities and have competed across the country in everything from Vale Tudo to archery to Scottish broadsword. Once my body broke down, I picked up a pen and went in the direction of writing. I specialize in betting advice, predictions, and I'm a walking encyclopedia of MMA trivia. I own a cafe in Exeter, NH called Hammersmith Sandwich Company and write out of my office between customers.

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