Bellator’s season five kicked off tonight in Atlantic City, New Jersey. The main card featured the first round of the Bellator welterweight tournament, the winner of which will win $100,000 and a shot at the winner of Bellator welterweight championship bout between champion Ben Askren and challenger Jay Hieron.
The card also marked the first time Bellator would air their full undercard using Spike.com. No word on whether that will lead to the promotion making a future TV move to the network as well.
The most impressive performance of the main card belonged to former UFC fighter Ben Saunders. Saunders fought a well-rounded fight against a motivated opponent in Chris Cisneros. While it should be noted that Cisneros was a late replacement for former US Olympian Rick Hawn, he showed heart in a fight where he was clearly outmatched.
After the fight, Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney announced the welterweight semifinal match-ups, pairing Ben Saunders vs. Luis Santos and Douglas Lima vs. Chris Lozano.
Main Card (MTV2)
170 lbs.: Chris Lozano def. Brent Weedman via unanimous decision (29-28,29-28,29-28)
170 lbs.: Ben Saudners def. Chris Cisneros via TKO at 0:29 Round 3
170 lbs.: Luis Santos def. Dan Hornbuckle via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
170 lbs.: Douglas Lima def. Steve Carl via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)
Local Card (Spike.com)
145 lbs.: Alexandre Bezerra def. Scott Heckman via TKO at 1:38 Round 2
170 lbs.: Giedrius Karavackas def. LeVon Maynard via TKO at 1:32 Round 3
145 lbs.: Joel Roberts def. Brylan Van Artsdalen via submission (triangle choke) at 1:47 Round 2
149 lbs.: Lester Caslow def. James Jones via TKO at 0:15 Round 2
265 lbs.: Azunna Anyanwu def. J.A. Dudley via TKO at 4:16 Round 2