Bellator conclude their eighth season in style with one of the most stacked events in the Chicago-based promotions history featuring two tournament finals and a blockbuster main event with Pat Curran defending his feartherweight crown against Shahbulat Shamhalaev.
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Rick Hawn vs. Karo Parisyan
Parisyan darts in with an overhand right, getting in tight and clinching up with Hawn. Hawn fires a knee that hits the UFC veteran on the cup, but looks like it didn’t hit. Karo gets back in the fight quickly, Hawn hits with a leg kick, Parisyan connects with a counter punch. Hawn connects with a shot as Parisyan moves forward, the Almenian fighter grabs the clinch again and Hawn connects with a knee and they separate quickly. Hawn catches a kick from Hawn and lands a lunch that sends him to the floor but Hawn spring back up. Spinning back fist from Parisyan that fails, Hawn answers with a powerful right-hand. Parisyan has been the aggressor for most of the round, although neither has a clear edge. Karo fires an inside leg kick but that hits Hawn on the cup. After a brief break Hawn is back in the fight, Hawn tries for the body shots but gets hit upstairs. Hawn charges with a combo but misses, Hawn hits upstairs with a head kick, pushing Parisyan against the fence before the round expires, 10-9 Parisyan.
Hawn tags Parisyan and puts him against the fence but they quickly go back to the center of the cage. The former Olympian tags Parisyan with a shot that rattles his base. Parisyans mouth is open, not a good sign for a guy with cardio issues. Hawn tags Parisyan with a hard shot that stumbles him before he pounces with more shots that finishes the fight, Parisyan gets up and protests the decision but I don’t think he has a leg to stand on, he was out.
Rick Hawn def. Karo Parisyan by TKO (strikes) at 1:55 of round 2
Middleweight tournament final: Brett Cooper vs. Doug Marshall
Marshall begins throwing powerful shots, as expected. Marshall tagging with a front leg kick, Cooper looks calm considering there’s a bowling ball of a man slinging leather at him. Cooper pushes Marshall against the fence and easily takes him down. In half-guard, Cooper did nothing, Marshall was holding him closely and begging for a stand-up. Cooper passes to full-guard, the slugger using the cage to get back to his feet. Marshall fires a nice knee, Cooper picking him up and slamming him to the floor. Marshall scoots back to the cage to use it to get back up again. Cooper landing nice, short shots. Marshall stands but Cooper drops down for the takedown already. Marshall separates, tags Cooper with a kill shot that finishes the fight.
Doug Marshall def. Brett Cooper by KO (punch) at 3:39 of round 1
Featherweight tournament final: Magomedrasul “Frodo” Khasbulaev vs. Mike Richman
Richman tags Frogo early. Frodo moves forward and connects with shots, continuing with a spinning-back-kick. Frodo tries a takedown but puts little effort into it. Richman tags Frodo, the Russian answering with a body kick, punch combo. Richman moves forward, putting together his combinations. Frodo hits with an overhand right, followed by a leg kick. Frodo catches Richman moving forward. The Russian is one the hunt, throwing with force. Frodo hits with a body shot, head punch combo. Richman is having success as well with his counter shots, taking advantage of the reckless Russian. Frodo is turning up the heat, but Richman is continuing to connect with his shorter shots. Frodo tags Richman, bloodies his nose and hits with a head kick that is blocked. Richman hits with a jab but eats a harder shot in return, 10-9 Frodo.
Richman moves in close and gets hit with a high kick. Richman catches Frodo coming in, beautifully timed. Frodo is like a pitbull, just attacking Richman with reckless abandon. Richman has cut his Russian foe, hitting with a nice uppercut. Frodo barely evades a head kick. Frodo showing good foot work, getting a nice takedown. Richman gets back to his feet with no issues. Richman hits wit h his counter shots again, Frodo grabs a single-leg takedown, looking to use the fence for the takedown. Richman separates but not without getting tagged from some hard shots. Richman hits with his jab but is tagged with a barrage of shots. Body, head combo from Richman. The Russian fires a leg kick, slips but Richman didn’t choose to join him on the mat. Richman hits a nice combo, dragging Frodo to the mat and lands shots before getting up, allowing Frodo to stand as the round expires, 10-9 Richman.
Frodo tries a takedown, it’s fenced off but he tags Richman with some hard shots. Richman’s not hitting with the harder shots but the shorter punches are having success. Frodo uses the cage and gets a takedown this time, lands some grounded shots but Richman gets back up. Richman is closing the distance but taking punishment for it. Richman hits a body-head combo again, beautiful stuff. Frodo moves forward with a ranging punch, followed by a nice straight-left. Richman barely misses a superman punch. Richman tags with his jab, moving forward before getting hit with a nice body kick. Frodo hits with a counter shot, followed by a nice uppercut. Frodo dumps Richman to the floor, lands some shots on the floor but Richman gets back up. The American moves forward with punches, Frodo trying a takedown, Richman evades it but takes some hard shots. Richman gets hit with a leg kick followed by a body shot. Both throw and miss, Richman hitting a head kick as the round closes, 10-9 Frodo (29-28 Frodo)
Frodo Khasbulaev def. Mike Richman by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Featherweight championship bout: Pat Curran vs. Shahbulat Shamhalaev
A feeling out process early, Curran hitting a front kick to the torso. Shamhalaev landing an inside kick, Curran attempting a high kick. Shamhalaev hits another leg kick, Curran answering with a head kick. Shamhalaev shoots for a takedown but falls directly into a guillotine-choke from the champ, Curran cranks on that hold until he gets it, very nicely done.
Pat Curran def. Shahbulat Shamhalaev by first round technical submission (guillotine-choke) at 2:38 of round 1