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Bellator 59 Results: Dantas Defeats Vila, Controversy Rules Night

Bellator 59 took place tonight in Atlantic City, New Jersey. Despite a stacked card with a lot of potential, controversy ruled the night in three of the four fights on the MTV2 main card.

Low blow ends heavyweight final

What started as a great main event fight between heavyweights Eric Prindle and Thiago Santos ended in bizarre fashion as the fight was rules a “no contest.” Santos clearly wanted the fight early and managed to take the former boxer down twice. Then with Santos standing over Prindle, the Brazilian fighter threw a brutal kick directly to the bottom of Prindle’s groin guard. Prindle took the full time to recover but after a discussion with the ringside physician the bout was called off. Despite the foul appearing flagrant, it was Santos’s first foul of the fight, which lead to the bout being ruled a “no contest”

While some doubted the severity of Prindle’s injury, Bellator President Bjorn Rebney reported that Prindle was taken to the hospital and was informed that the heavyweight had sustained a serious injury. A rematch between the two is expected for early-2012, with the winner facing Bellator heavyweight champion Cole Konrad.

“Pitbull” mauls “Batman”

Patricky “Pitbull” Freire was hungry to get back in the win column tonight against Kurt Pelligrino after a suffering the second loss of his career to newly crowned Bellator lightweight champion Michael Chandler. Freire exploded against Pelligrino with vicious strikes that dropped the former UFC fighter. While Pelligrino moved to the “Peterson” position, Freire rained down strikes with his free hand and trapped the wounded fighter. While the stoppage did come a little early, not stopping the fight there would have merely delayed the inevitable had the fight continued.

While fans booed and shouted racist comments at Freire after the fight, Pellegrino took the loss with class and offered to help Freire train as he prepares for the Season 6 lightweight tournament. Pelligrino announced his retirement after the fight, again, and seemed to imply that he took the fight so that he could his career where it started.

Dantas size proves too much Vila, wins bantamweight tournament

While Alexis Vila looked good early on against Nova Unaio product Eduardo Dantas, Dantas size advantage proved too much for the Cuban in the last two rounds. The fight was the only one on the main card that did not end with some controversy as Dantas picked up the clear victory.

After being controlled in the first, Dantas used his range to defend takedowns and effectively strike against Vila in the second. In the third, Vila went on the attack early as he continued to pressure the larger fighter with takedown attempts and power shots. Vila managed to secure Dantas leg in a takedown attempt but the Brazilian fighter turned this to an advantage by using his length to take Vila’s back. The rest of the fight was Vila blocking the submission and trying to get Dantas off his back.

Held picks up a controversial win over Nover

Polish fighter Marcin Held picked up his second straight win since losing to current Bellator lightweight champion Michael Chandler in the opening round of the Season 4 tournament by defeating TUF-Alum Phillipe Nover.

Held picked up a win with an aggressive ground attack that reminded this writer of Shinya Aoki and Masakazu Imanari’s “sliding” style. With that said, the decision was heavily booed and criticzed by multiple media outlets as nearly everyone felt Nover won the fight based on far-more effective striking both standing and on the ground. While Held did work for many submissions, few appeared to put Nover in any real danger and Nover also locked up several of his own submission attempts during the fight.

Nover, who was returning after spending time away from MMA to focus on his main career, could not help but laugh at the decision. While the bout was to determine a slot in the Season 6 lightweight tournament, it is possible that Nover may still be given a slot in the bracket.

Main Card

  • Heavyweight Final – Eric Prindle vs. Thiago Santos ruled a “no contest” due to an “unintentional foul”
  • Lightweight – Patricky Freire defeats Kurt Pellegrino via TKO (strikes) at 0:50 of Round 1
  • Bantamweight Final – Eduardo Dantas def. Alexis Vila via unanimous decision (29-28,29-28,29-28)
  • Lightweight Marcin Held def. Phillipe Nover via split decision (29-28,28-29,29-28)

Local Feature Fights

  • Karl Amoussou def. Jesus Martinez via TKO (strikes) at 2:20 of Round 1
  • LeVon Maynard def. Chris Wing via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-26)
  • Lucas Pimenta def. Doug Gordon via knockout (elbows) at 0:40 of Round 1
  • Scott Heckman def. Brylan Van Artsdalen via submission (standing guillotine choke) at 1:38 of Round 1
  • Gregory Milliard def. Brandon Saling via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)


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