RotoWire Partners

Latest Fantasy MMA News – Bellator

The most recent Bellator fantasy MMA news from RotoWire.

MMA News:

Latest

UFC

Bellator

PFL

Other

Injuries

Emily Ducote    Bellator    Flyweight
Ducote will face Ilima-Lei MacFarlane in a flyweight fight at Bellator 186 on November 3 in Pennsylvania, Brett Okamoto of ESPN reports.

Fantasy Analysis

Ducote has been given a second chance at Ilima-Lei MacFarlane after suffering a unanimous decision defeat to her in December. The opportunity comes with an added bonus: the first women's flyweight title. Bellator will be adding a belt for the division ahead of the UFC, who is introducing a flyweight champion in December. At 23 years old, Ducote is 6-2 since going professional in 2015. Both fighters scored their latest victory over Jessica Middleton.
Ilima-Lei MacFarlane    Bellator    Flyweight
MacFarlane will face Emily Ducote in a flyweight contest at Bellator 186 on November 3 in Pennsylvania, Brett Okamoto of ESPN reports.

Fantasy Analysis

MacFarlane has emerged as a top female fighter for Bellator and has been given the chance to claim the first women's flyweight title in a major U.S. promotion. While the UFC is also introducing the division this year, this matchup will happen first. The 27-year-old has a 6-0 record (5-0 Bellator) that includes a unanimous decision over Emily Ducote from December 2016. The rematch will bring the flyweight division to the forefront for Bellator fans as well as female competitors looking for a new weight class.
Cris Williams    Bellator    Featherweight
Williams signed a contract with Bellator on Wednesday.

Fantasy Analysis

Williams is a 23-year-old prospect that has yet to record a loss in his career. While he is only 2-0 professionally, "Sunshine" is riding a seven-fight winning streak that dates back to 2015 when he joined the sport. The young and charismatic featherweight will be a good addition to the promotion. Williams trains with Gracie Barra in Portland.
Aaron Pico    Bellator    Lightweight
Pico will face Justin Linn in a featherweight fight at Bellator 183 on September 23 in San Jose, Alexander Lee of MMAFighting.com reports.

Fantasy Analysis

Pico is a top prospect with an extensive wrestling background. However, his debut against Zach Freeman was a flop that lasted a mere 24 seconds. This time around, Pico will make the move down to featherweight (145 pounds) from lightweight (155 pounds). The lower weight class will help the 20-year-old escape bigger opponents, but he won't be able to avoid the experience that fighters like Linn have. How the wrestling prodigy fares in his second outing may determine the American Kickboxing Academy product's fight plan for the next several years. Bellator brass will soon find out if he's ready to start climbing the ladder towards a belt, or needs to stay in the lower ranks to build experience. Either way, Pico has plenty of time to figure himself out as a fighter.
Douglas Lima    Bellator    Welterweight
Lima has agreed to terms on a six-fight contract extension with Bellator MMA, Guilherme Cruz of MMAFighting.com reports.

Fantasy Analysis

Lima's starpower has been growing under the Bellator banner, as the 29-year-old Brazilian recently defended his welterweight title against newcomer Lorenz Larkin. Rumor has it that fellow UFC product Rory MacDonald will be his next title defense, though the promotion has yet to announce a time and place. "The Phenom" already has 35 professional fights before the age of 30, and 24 of those victories have been earned via stoppage. His only losses since 2010 have came to Andrey Koreshkov (which he later avenged), and Ben Askren -- one of the best wrestlers to ever grace the cage.
Tyree Fortune    Bellator    Light Heavyweight
Fortune signed a multiple-fight deal with Bellator on Thursday.

Fantasy Analysis

Fortune will join his twin brother, current Bellator heavyweight champion Tyrell Fortune, to fight with the California-based promotion. With a 3-0 professional career and an 8-1 amateur career, he looks to join the 205-pound division with the potential to drop down to middleweight. A debut for the newcomer has not yet been set at this time.
Chidi Njokuani    Bellator    Welterweight
Njokuani lost to Andrey Koreshkov via TKO (strikes) at 4:08 of Round 1 at Bellator 182 on Friday in Verona, N.Y.

Fantasy Analysis

Njokuani has already accomplished more than many pundits thought possible. However, a win over the former Bellator welterweight champion was a bridge too far. He had some success early with leg kicks, but Koreshkov had too much experience on the ground and did too much damage from the top position. The loss stopped an eight-fight winning streak that dated back to 2013. Njokuani will be back in action, and he still could be only a win or two away from a shot at the promotion's welterweight title.
Andrey Koreshkov    Bellator    Welterweight
Koreshkov defeated Chidi Njokuani via TKO (strikes) at 4:08 of Round 1 at Bellator 182 on Friday in Verona, N.Y.

Fantasy Analysis

After dropping his title against Douglas Lima in his last fight, the former champion looked to be back in form here. Koreshkov ate some leg kicks early, but once he figured out the timing and distance, he dominated. He scored with a spinning back fist and a flying knee on the feet. He then moved in for a takedown and passed to side control. From there, he unleashed a barrage of elbows that forced Njokuani to defend. He blocked a lot of the shots, but the onslaught was not stopping. Eventually, the referee was forced to stop the bout. Koreshkov has proved in the past that he can beat Lima. If he continues to have performances like this, he will get another shot.
Brennan Ward    Bellator    Welterweight
Ward lost to Fernando Gonzalez via submission (guillotine choke) at 1:02 of Round 3 at Bellator 182 on Friday in Verona, N.Y.

Fantasy Analysis

When Gonzalez takes a step up in competition there is a familiar trend. He comes in as an underdog, does enough to make his opponent have an off day and eventually drops the decision. This nearly happened against Ward, just like it did against Michael Page and Paul Daley (kickboxing). Ward seemed to be aware of this trend. He slowed down his normally crazy pace. He went to his wrestling early and often, and he built a lead going into the third round. In the last frame, he went for a takedown and got caught in a guillotine. Despite the loss, Ward is not going anywhere. The promotion loves his exciting fights, so he will certainly be back. However, this loss does pretty much eliminate him from title contention for the time being.
Fernando Gonzalez    Bellator    Welterweight
Gonzalez defeated Brennan Ward via submission (guillotine choke) at 1:02 of Round 3 at Bellator 182 on Friday in Verona, N.Y.

Fantasy Analysis

Gonzalez is a difficult fighter to look good against. Since 2014, he has only lost two fights, against Paul Daley (kickboxing) and Michael Page. In both of those fights, he made a heavily favored opponent look vulnerable before losing. He was well on the way towards doing the same against Ward. Ward normally comes out like a house on fire, but he was much more tactical with his approach here. He went to his wrestling early and often against Gonzalez. Going into the third round, Gonzalez was down two rounds. Ward went for a takedown, and Gonzalez latched on the fight-ending guillotine choke. This is a big win for his career in Bellator.
Veta Arteaga    Bellator    Flyweight
Arteaga lost to Bruna Ellen via split decision (28-29, 29-28, 28-29) at Bellator 182 on Friday in Verona, N.Y.

Fantasy Analysis

Arteaga came into this fight looking to pressure Ellen. She continually tried to close the distance, but Ellen made it very hard. The Brazilian circled away very well and landed counters. Arteaga was able to get the clinch on multiple occasions, but Ellen was able to reverse position along the cage almost every time. In the second round, Arteaga scored a reversal after an Ellen takedown. She did good work on the top, but Ellen managed to stay in the fight. There are still fighters in the Bellator women's flyweight division that Arteaga can beat. She will most likely be in the promotion for her next few fights.
Bruna Ellen    Bellator    Flyweight
Ellen defeated Veta Arteaga via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28) at Bellator 182 on Friday in Verona, N.Y.

Fantasy Analysis

Ellen has made meaningful improvements to her game since her Bellator debut last summer. In this fight, she used her footwork very well to land counters. Arteaga wanted to apply pressure, but she mostly ended up chasing Ellen around the cage and eating strikes. When she was able to catch Ellen and put her on the cage, the Brazilan was able to reverse the position and escape back to distance. Despite being reversed on the ground in the second round, Ellen was able to seal the fight with a takedown in the third. At only 21 years of age, Ellen still has plenty of time to continue to improve. If she takes advantage, she could be a player in Bellator's blooming women's flyweight division.
Blair Tugman    Bellator    Featherweight
Tugman lost to AJ McKee via unanimous decision (27-30, 26-30, 26-30) at Bellator 182 on Friday in Verona, N.Y.

Fantasy Analysis

Tugman really struggled with the distance in this fight. He was the shorter fighter, and his footwork could not make up for the reach. McKee landed liberally with kicks, while Tugman looked for answers. He wanted to work for takedowns, but none of his attempts were close. Tugman did a good job of catching a lot of McKee's strikes on his arms, but he still ate shots and struggled against kicks. "The Bull Shark" had won three-straight fights in Bellator prior to this fight, but none of those opponents were on McKee's level.
A.J. McKee    Bellator    Featherweight
McKee defeated Blair Tugman via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-26, 30-26) at Bellator 182 on Friday in Verona, N.Y.

Fantasy Analysis

In the first round, McKee was able to control distance with his footwork. He stayed on the outside and dictated the pace and position of the fight with lateral movement. McKee landed with hooks and kicks from the outside. Late in the round, he swarmed on Tugman after an apparent eye poke and did solid work from the top position. This trend continued in the second and third rounds. Tugman did a good job defending, but he had virtually no offense, and McKee still scored. The "Mercenary" improved to 9-0 as a professional and with Bellator. He began his run in the promotion with five-straight stoppages. However, since moving up in competition, he has scored three decisions in four fights. With that being, he continued to pass every test in front of him.
Marc Stevens    Bellator    Strawweight
Stevens lost to Ricky Rainey via unanimous decision (27-29, 27-29, 27-29) at Bellator 182 on Friday in Verona, N.Y.

Fantasy Analysis

Stevens struggled with Rainey's reach in this fight. Rainey was much taller and used that advantage to land strikes on the outside. However, Stevens was still able to impact the fight with his clinch fighting and wrestling. With that being said, it was not enough to win rounds. Stevens simply ate too many strikes when he tried to close the distance. In the final round, he gave up his back on a takedown attempt and struggled to make the final bell. This was Stevens' Bellator debut, and he will certainly get another shot in the promotion.