Bellator 183 Recap

Patricky “Pitbull” Freire managed to come away with the split decision over Benson Henderson in the lightweight main event of Bellator 183 from the SAP Center in San Jose, California.

Both men were cautious in the first round, trying to feint attacks to sucker the other man in. Because of this, not much action seemed to be going on and the first could have been scored either way.

Henderson attempted a takedown early in the second round, but it was stuffed by Pitbull. Henderson then grabbed Pitbull’s legs again, going for a takedown, and got Pitbull against the cage, holding him there for what felt like the longest time. Despite warnings from referee John McCarthy to force Pitbull to let go of the cage, he did not reset the two men. Pitbull managed to end up quickly taking down Henderson, but Henderson got right back up and the round soon ended.

Throughout the third, Henderson missed on a bunch of wild shots, while Pitbull was landing a couple of combinations and avoiding Henderson’s constant takedown attempts. In the last minute, Pitbull showed himself as the more aggressive of the two, countering Henderson’s takedown attempt with an elbow, and chasing him down until the bell.

One judge scored the bout 29-28 for Henderson, but the other two scored it 29-28 for Pitbull, giving Pitbull the win via split decision.

Elsewhere on the card, Paul Daley scored a second-round win over Lorenz Larkin with a vicious left hand.

This event also saw the Bellator debut of heavyweight UFC veteran and Ultimate Fighter winner Roy “Big Country” Nelson, who fought Javy Ayala. Despite many expectations of a first-round finish, the bout went the distance, with Nelson winning via decision.

The highly-touted Aaron Pico, who lost in less than 30 seconds in his MMA debut at Bellator NYC, dropped down to featherweight and scored a highlight-reel knockout over Justin Linn.

Bellator 183 Results (9 p.m., Spike):
Lightweight: Patricky Pitbull def. Benson Henderson via split decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28)
Welterweight: Paul Daley def. Lorenz Larkin via KO (Rd. 2, 2:40)
Heavyweight: Roy Nelson def. Javy Ayala via unanimous decision (30-26, 29-28, 29-28)
Featherweight: Aaron Pico def. Justin Linn via KO (Rd. 1, 3:45)
Lightweight: Goiti Yamauchi def. Adam Piccolotti via submission (rear-naked choke) (Rd. 1, 3:19)

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