An already massive card has gained more firepower in the form of two huge title fights.
Douglas Lima will defend his Bellator Welterweight Championship against Strikeforce, UFC veteran Lorenz Larkin. “Iron” Michael Chandler will look to defend his Bellator Lightweight Championship in a rather surprising fight against rising prospect Brent Primus.
Douglas Lima vs. Lorenz Larkin
Lima (28-6) reclaimed his welterweight title via brutal third round knockout against Andrey Koreshkov at Bellator 164. That was his second win in a row, as he went into the title opportunity with a decision win over Paul Daley. Prior to this two-fight win streak, he is currently on, Lima lost his welterweight title to the man he beat in order to reclaim it just a few months ago; Andrey Koreshkov.
Larkin (18-5, 1NC) was shockingly released from the UFC despite coming off two wins against the current #5 and #6 ranked welterweights within the promotion. In August of last year in his most recent outing, Larkin mauled Neil Magny to earn a first round TKO. Prior to this fight, he outlasted Jorge Masvidal to earn a split decision win.
Michael Chandler vs. Brent Primus
Chandler (16-3) is the current Bellator Lightweight Champion and has won four-straight fights. In 2015 he picked up finishes against David Rickels and Derek Campos and earned himself a shot at the vacant lightweight title against Patricky ‘Pitbull’ in June of last year. Chandler scored a brutal knockout punch early to win the title. In February he went on to defend against former UFC Lightweight Champion Benson Henderson. Chandler dominated Henderson to pick up a well-deserved unanimous decision after 25 minutes.
Primus (7-0) is a surprising choice to fight Chandler for his lightweight title, but it might not be as crazy as it looks at first glance. Michael Chandler was a relative unknown with a record of 8-0 when he was given a shot at then-champion Eddie Alvarez. And in that fight, we saw Chandler finish Alvarez in one of the greatest fights of all time. Maybe something similar will happen in this fight! Primus enters the fight with a record of 5-0 in Bellator. His two biggest wins also happen to be his most recent. In mid-2015 Primus earned a decision win over Derek Anderson, and in April of last year he picked up a somewhat controversial decision win over Gleristone Santos. Come fight time, he will have been inactive for 14 months.
‘Bellator NYC: Silva vs. Sonnen’ is shaping up to be the biggest Bellator MMA card to date. It will be their return to pay-per-view, as well. In the main event, legendary brawler Wanderlei Silva will return vs. long-time rival Chael Sonnen. The co-main event sees heavyweight great Fedor Emelianenko take on UFC-veteran Matt Mitrione.
These two title fights & that previously announced main and co-main event are the only fights announced for the card.
Bellator NYC is set to take place on June 24 in New York City, New York at arguably the most famous sports venue of all time; Madison Square Garden. On that same day, just prior to the ‘Bellator NYC: Silva vs. Sonnen’ pay-per-view event, Bellator 180 will take place live & free on Spike TV. The numbered event and the pay-per-view will be two entirely different shows. No fights have been announced for Bellator 180 yet.