Bellator season five continued tonight with the quarterfinals of the Bellator middleweight tournament live from the Seminole Hard Rock Resort and Casino in Hollywood, Florida, where middleweights Bryan Baker, Brian Rogers, Alexander Shlemenko, and Vitor Vianna all advanced to the semifinals with victories over their respective opponents.
In the main event of the night, Bryan Baker overcame an early threat from Jared Hess to hand him the first stoppage loss of his career not due to injury. Hess looked great early and nearly secured a fight ending rear-naked choke, but Baker showed impressive heart by refusing to tap. The turning point of the fight came soon after when Hess attempted a sambo rolling knee bar and missed badly with Baker stacking Hess and battering him with strikes. Hess was unable to put Baker in any real danger the rest of the bout.
A bit of controversy marred an otherwise exciting fight between Brian Rogers and Victor O’Donnell. Rogers dropped O’Donnell and followed up with hammer fists on the ground until the referee stepped in to stop the fight. O’Donnell argued vehemently that he was not out and was still able to fight. While replays showed O’Donnell was still alert throughout the exchange, the awkard positioning of the referee coupled with the way O’Donnell’s arms were awkwardly positioned likely contributed to the early stoppage. After the fight, Rogers said he thought the fight might have ended early but berated the crowd for booing and said he would gladly take a future rematch.
On the local card (aired on Spike.com), Rad Martinez won his Bellator debut in impressive fashion with a dominant decision victory. Martinez rose to fame with his appearance on ESPN’s Outside the Lines show.
Main Card (MTV2)
- 185lbs quarterfinal- Bryan Baker defeated Jared Hess vio TKO (strikes) at 2:52 of round 3
- 185lbs quarterfinal- Brian Rogers defeated Victor O’Donnell via TKO (strikes) at 1:56 of round 1
- 185lbs quarterfinal- Alexander Shlemenko defeated Zelg Galesic via submission (standing guillotine) at 1:55 of round 1
- 185lbs quarterfinal- Vitor Vianna defeated Sam Alvey via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
Local Card (Spike.com)
- 185lbs- Brett Cooper defeated Valdir Araujo via TKO (punches) at 0:35 of round 3
- 155lbs- Rad Martinez defeated Brian van Hoven via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
- 170lbs- Ailton Barbosa defeated Ryan Keenan via submission (rear-naked choke) at 1:55 of round 1.
- 170lbs- Cristiano Souza defeated John Kelly via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
- 155lbs- JP Reese defeated Martin Brown via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)