MMASucka’s Bellator 286 Staff Picks

Part two of our MMASucka staff picks double-header is in.

Tonight, October 1st sees Bellator 286 set for action from the Long Beach Arena in Long Beach, California, returning to the city for the first time since Eddie Alvarez and Michael Chandler’s incredible rematch in 2013. The event will begin at 7:00pm ET (4:00pm PT) on Bellator’s YouTube channel with the four-fight main card kicking off at 10:00pm ET (7:00pm PT) live on Showtime.

Bellator 286: Pitbull vs. Borics results will be available here at MMASucka.

Be sure to check out our staff picks for this evening’s UFC Vegas 61: Dern vs. Yan event from Las Vegas.

The Fights

Bellator’s Featherweight Championship is on the line in the night’s featured main event as Patricio Pitbull looks to defend his belt against Adam Borics.

Pitbull, the promotion’s former lightweight champion and three-time featherweight title holder, looks to make the most of this third run as champion after success in his rematch against A.J. McKee in April. The Brazilian great looks to continue his Bellator legacy as he looks for the 34th victory of his professional career. Pitbull’s opponent, Borics, has done nothing shy of impress since joining with Bellator in 2017 having just one defeat to Darrion Caldwell through ten promotional fights. A win would be his fifth since August 2020 as the 29-year-old Hungarian looks to make the most of his opportunity at gold.

A.J. McKee and Spike Carlyle will meet in the co-main event. Former featherweight champion McKee moves up a division for the first time looking to rebound after his undefeated 18-0 run was lost to the aforementioned Pitbull. Carlyle makes his promotional debut after five victories each in various promotions following his release from the UFC. This fight comes at a catchweight of 156.6 pounds after Carlyle missed the divisional limit by 0.6 pounds.

Also on the main card sees former Olympic freestyle wrestler Aaron Pico take on Xtreme Couture’s Jeremy Kennedy at featherweight and former promotional bantamweight champion Juan Archuleta against The Ultimate Fighter: Latin America 2 tournament victor Enrique Barzola at a contracted catchweight of 141 pounds. Find our MMASucka staff picks for these Bellator 286 fights further below.

Staff Picks

Staff picks in 2022 will follow the same set of rules from the 2021 season. Throughout the calendar year, staff picks will be composed of main card fights from both UFC and Bellator events. Main card fights and selected preliminary fights will be included for PFL MMA. Dana White’s Contender Series are composed of the entire fight card.

The WINNER of staff picks in 2022 will have a choice between receiving a custom-made championship belt from ProAmBelts or a chain from Championship Chains. A winner is determined simply by the individual correctly picking the most victorious fighters at the year’s end. Nate Freeman secured his first victory with MMASucka in 2021 with a compiled record 243-136.

See our UFC Vegas 61: Dern vs. Yan picks below.

Staff Records after Dana White’s Contender Series 56:

1. Wesley Riddle: 213-108
2. Frazer Krohn: 211-110
3T. Michael DeSantis: 209-112
3T. Nate Freeman: 209-107
5. Jeremy Brand: 195-120
6T. Andrew Benjamin: 173-131
6T. William Dong: 173-106
8. Chris Presnell: 170-120
9. Julio Monteros Jr.: 163-92
10. Tim Wheaton: 162-94
11. Brian Knight: 125-88
12. Mike Lynch: 123-74
13. Jack Goodwillie: 118-58
14. Brandon Joint: 115-74
15. Ash Camyab: 105-77
16. Coby Weinsier: 87-47
17. Chinyere Okafor: 72-38
18. Jacek Okninski: 70-58
19. Roemello Reyes: 62-31
20. Ben Jamieson: 34-21
21. Matt Bricker: 24-22
22. Joe Porter: 11-5

*Note – not all staff pick for every event*
*Note – UFC Vegas 61 picks will be added to the above records NEXT weekend*

Juan Archuleta (25-4), +100
Enrique Barzola (18-6-2), -120

Catchweight Fight
– 141 lbs. –

Jeremy Brand: Archuleta via Round 2 TKO
Wesley Riddle: Archuleta via Split Decision
Michael DeSantis: Barzola via Split Decision
Andrew Benjamin: Archuleta via Unanimous Decision
Frazer Krohn: Barzola via Unanimous Decision
Julio Monteros Jr.: Barzola via Unanimous Decision
Brian Knight: Barzola via Split Decision

Staff picking Archuleta: 3
Staff picking Barzola: 4

Aaron Pico (10-3), -700
Jeremy Kennedy (17-3, 1 NC), +510

Featherweight Division
– 145 lbs. –

Jeremy Brand: Kennedy via Unanimous Decision
Wesley Riddle: Pico via Round 2 TKO
Michael DeSantis: Pico via Round 2 TKO
Andrew Benjamin: Pico via Round 1 TKO
Frazer Krohn: Pico via Round 2 TKO
Julio Monteros Jr.: Pico via Round 2 TKO
Brian Knight: Pico via Unanimous Decision

Staff picking Pico: 6
Staff picking Kennedy: 1

A.J. McKee (18-1), -520
Spike Carlyle (14-3), +410

Catchweight Fight
– 156.6 lbs. –

Jeremy Brand: McKee via Round 1 SUB
Wesley Riddle: McKee via Round 1 SUB
Michael DeSantis: McKee via Round 2 SUB
Andrew Benjamin: Carlyle via Split Decision
Frazer Krohn: McKee via Round 2 SUB
Julio Monteros Jr.: McKee via Round 2 TKO
Brian Knight: McKee via Unanimous Decision

Staff picking McKee: 6
Staff picking Carlyle: 1

Patricio Pitbull (33-5), -155
Adam Borics (18-1), +135

Featherweight Main Event
– 141 lbs. –

Jeremy Brand: Pitbull via Round 2 TKO
Wesley Riddle: Pitbull via Unanimous Decision
Michael DeSantis: Pitbull via Unanimous Decision
Andrew Benjamin: Pitbull via Round 2 TKO
Frazer Krohn: Pitbull via Unanimous Decision
Julio Monteros Jr.: Pitbull via Unanimous Decision
Brian Knight: Pitbull via Round 3 TKO

Staff picking Pitbull: 7
Staff picking Borics: 0

*Fight odds from DraftKings*


Bellator 286
A.J. McKee (left) and Spike Carlyle (right) ahead of their Bellator 286 co-main event fight taking place Saturday, October 1st from the Long Beach Arena in Long Beach, California (photo credits to Bellator MMA).


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