Bellator Announces Field For Featherweight GP
Bellator has yet to disappoint with their first two forays into the Grand Prix tournament format, and the their third offering is looking to be more contentious than the heavyweight and welterweight tournaments.
Announced on Monday by Bellator President Scott Coker on Ariel Helwani’s MMA Show, sixteen fighters will compete for the chance to not only to have the Bellator featherweight title, but become $1 million richer in the process.
The first round will span across Bellator 226 on September 7th, and Bellator 228 on September 28th, both exclusively on DAZN.
The matchups will feature
Bellator 226 — Sept. 7 — San Jose, Calif.
Sam Sicilia (16-9) vs. Pedro Carvalho (10-3)
Daniel Straus (26-8) vs. Derek Campos (19-9)
Pat Curran (23-8) vs. Adam Borics (13-0)
Emmanuel Sanchez (18-4) vs. Tywan Claxton (5-0)
Bellator 228 — Sept. 28 — Inglewood, Calif.
Patricio Freire (29-4) vs. Juan Archuleta (23-1)
A.J. McKee (14-0) vs. Georgi Karakhanyan (28-9-1, 1 NC)
Darrion Caldwell (12-3) vs. Henry Corrales (17-3)
Daniel Weichel (39-11) vs. Saul Rogers (13-2)
Freire and Archuleta was announced by the Viacom owned promotion last week as the main event for Bellator 228, and will be the only five-round fight of the first round, due to Freire’s title being on the line.
Unlike the welterweight grand prix, only the semifinals and finals will see each fight be scheduled for five rounds, with the champion defending the title in each round of the tournament.
Not only will the current champion take part in the tournament, but former featherweight champions Daniel Straus and Pat Curran will take part, as former bantamweight champion Darrion Caldwell, who moved up a weight class following his Bellator 222 loss to Horiguchi.
The second round will be entirely re-seeded in a random drawing to take place sometime following Bellator 228.