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Bellator 163 results: Phil Davis dominates Liam McGeary to capture light heavyweight belt
Liam McGeary thought he could force Phil Davis into takedown attempts and take advantage with his guard at Bellator 163. Instead, Davis dominated on the ground and captured the light heavy title by lopsided decision.
The event took place at Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Conn. The main card aired on Spike following prelims on MMAjunkie.
Davis (17-3 MMA, 4-0 BMMA) tagged McGeary (11-1 MMA, 8-1 BMMA) with a left hook in Round 1, taking the champ’s confidence on the feet for much of the round. Davis scored a takedown and went into mount and spent the round forcing McGeary to defend from every position until the opening round came to a close.
Even action on the feet in Round 2, with both men landing solid kicks, led to another takedown from Davis. On the ground, Davis quickly mounted McGeary once again, melting through the guard the champ thought would be one of his best weapons in the fight.
McGeary did survive the bad position once again, however, and even closed the round working back to his feet and throwing strikes as he became the aggressor.
The action continued the same way to the conclusion of the fifth round, with Davis repeatedly scoring takedowns and moving to mount with ease.
While he was never able to come close to a finish, Davis cruised to the final decision, capturing the title by scores of 50-43, 50-45 and 50-44.
The new light heavyweight champ is now riding a four-fight winning streak since joining the promotion.
Ward scores quick knockout
Saad Awad (19-9 MMA, 7-6 BMMA) fell into the trap of the one thing you don’t want to do when facing Brennan Ward (14-4 MMA, 10-4 BMMA) in a welterweight showdown and paid dearly for his mistake.
Awad was forced back against the cage with Ward firing away with punches. Awad attempted to transition from covering up to returning fire. In the ensuing firefight, Ward clipped him on the chin and ended the fight with a knockout at the 1:26 mark of Round 1.
Neiman Gracie (5-0 MMA, 3-0 BMMA) showcased ground skills that should make his family proud, securing an armbar submission win over Rudy Bears (16-15 MMA, 2-7 BMMA) in the first round of their 175-pound catchweight bout.
After tentative action on the feet, Gracie and Bears battled in the clinch, opening up a takedown for the Brazilian. Once the fight hit the ground, Gracie took over. He quickly moved to the back and locked in a body triangle, alternating between submission attempts and strikes to the head. When the choke didn’t present itself, Gracie pulled off a slick transition from back control to an armbar to force the tap at the 4:39 mark of Round 1.
Ayala blasts Kharitonov
Javy Ayala (10-5 MMA, 5-2 BMMA) wasted no time getting rid of a long-time top heavyweight when he knocked out Sergei Kharitonov(23-6 MMA, 0-1 BMMA) in just 16 seconds.
Kharitonov had no opportunity to show off his skills, getting baited into eating a massive right hand. The punch landed and Kharitonov crashed to the mat as Ayala launched into an immediate celebration.
Full Bellator 163 results include:
MAIN CARD (Spike, 9 p.m. ET)
Phil Davis def. Liam McGeary via unanimous decision (50-43, 50-45, 50-44) – to win light heavyweight title
Brennan Ward def. Saad Awad via knockout (punches) – Round 1, 1:26
Neiman Gracie def. Rudy Bears via submission (armbar) – Round 1, 4:39
Javy Ayala def. Sergei Kharitonov via knockout (punch) – Round 1, 0:16
PRELIMINARY CARD (MMAjunkie, 6:45 p.m. ET)
Hannah Regina def. Sarah Payant via submission (armbar) – Round 1, 4:51
Tim Caron def. Steve Skrzat via TKO (strikes) – Round 2, 1:22
Tyler King def. Josh Diekmann via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 2, 1:19
Tyrell Fortune def. Cody Miskell via TKO (strikes) – Round 1, 2:22
Ed Ruth def. Dustin Collins-Miles via TKO (strikes) – Round 1, 3:19
Carlos Correia def. Ilya Kotau via split decision (30-27, 29-28, 30-27)
Vinicius De Jesus def. James Boran via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 2, 1:55
Walter Smith-Cotito vs. Blair Tugman
Keenan Raymond vs. Kastriot Xhema
Thomas English vs. Chris Foster