Bellator London: Lovato Beats Mousasi, becomes Middleweight Champion

Lovato beats Mousasi, becomes Middleweight Champion

Heading into Bellator London, many expected Gegard Mousasi to continue his streak of impressive wins. Rafael Lovato Jr. ended his run with a dominant wrestling outing, dethroning Mousasi at Bellator London to become the new Middleweight Champion.

The first half of the of the fight could be considered all Lovato (10-0). Taking place inside the SSE Arena in London, England, Lovato used his impressive takedown offense to overpower Mousasi (45-7-2). He pressed Mousasi up against the cage and worked from the top following an application of the clinch. Lovato controlled the round, even if Mousasi was able to display some offense.

Round two was more of the same. Lovato had Mousasi down in less than a minute in. He landed a few punches, but Mousasi was able to fight out several times. While the former champion was able to back up against the cage, Lovato countered any defense with whatever he could. Mousasi ended up coming to life in the second, but it wasn’t enough to give him an edge.

Round three saw a tired Mousasi gain some sort of momentum. After several minutes on the ground, Mousasi fought back and the last minute of the round saw Mousasi move the momentum towards his favor.

Mousasi ended up controlling the pace in round four, knocking down Lovato twice. it was not enough to finish him off, however, and round five was all Lovato. He knocked Mousasi down to the mat and would not let up. At one point he tried to catch Mousasi with a rear-naked choke. Lovato crushed Mousasi with elbows to the back of the head and would not stop.

Eventually, the round ended, and it was clear Lovato would walk out as champion.

Lovato ends Mousasi’s eight-fight win streak that includes wins over fighters like Vitor Belfort, Uriah Hall, Chris Weidman, Alexander Shlemenko and Rory MacDonald.

Bellator London also saw Paul Daley beat Erick Silva via unanimous decision in the main event of the Bellator 223 portion of the card. James Gallagher also had a unanimous decision victory over Jeremiah Labiano.

Bellator London (Bellator App, 5 p.m. ET) 

Rafael Lovato Jr. def. Gegard Mousasi (c) via majority decision (47-47, 48-47, 48-47) – Bellator Middleweight Championship

Melvin Manhoef def. Kent Kauppinen via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)

Aaron Chalmers def. Fred Freeman via triangle submission (4:05 into round two

Bellator 223 – Main Card (Paramount Network broadcast/Delayed simulcast on DAZN, 9 PM ET)

Paul Daley def. Erick Silva via unanimous decision (29-27, 29-27, 29-27)

James Gallagher def. Jeremiah Labiano via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)

Fabian Edwards def. Jonathan Bosuku via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)

Costello van Steenis def. Mike Shipman via knockout (1:34 into round two)

Charlie Ward def. Justin Moorevia TKO/punches (3:23 into round three)

Bellator 223 – Preliminary Card (Bellator App, 11:30 a.m. ET)

Denise Kielholtz def. Bryony Tyrell via TKO (2:48 into round three)

Charlie Leary def. Chris Bungard via unanimous decision (30-25, 30-25, 30-25)

Kate Jackson def. Kena Ovchynnikova via TKO/Doctor stoppage (4:20 into round one)

Terry Brazier def. Alessandro Botti via Americana submission (2:17 into round three)

Luke Ord def. Nathan Rose via unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 30-25)

Alfie Davis def. Jorge Kanella via unanimous decision (29-27, 29-27, 29-27)

Justin Burlinson def. Wendle Lewis via TKO submission (injury) (00:09 into round one)

Galore Bofando def. Keith McCabe via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)

Kevin Fryer def. John Redmond via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)

Frans Mlambo def. Nathan Greyson via D’Arce choke (4:22 into round two)



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