Bellator 163: Quick Thoughts on Betting the Main Card

Bellator 163With one of the best Bellator events of the year on the horizon, Jay Primetown gives his quick thoughts on Bellator 163’s main card… Javy Ayala vs. Sergei Kharitonov The main card kicks off with yet another highly-anticipated Bellator debut. The promotion had made waves in recent months signing some of the top available talent in the sport. Russian Sergei Kharitonov was perhaps the best heavyweight fighter on the market. The 6-foot-4 Russian is a high-level kickboxer turned MMA fighter who holds wins over Andrei Arlovski, Alistair Overeem, and Fabricio Werdum in his career. Kharitonov makes his debut against Javy Ayala; a heavyweight opponent who has lost two of his last three bouts. Look for the Russian to cruise in this set-up bout before taking on more experienced opponents in the organization. Derek Anderson vs. Paul Daley Perhaps the most intriguing contest on the main card is a battle of welterweights when Derek Anderson takes on Paul “Semtex” Daley. The Englishman had won five of his last six bouts prior to a defeat against title contender Douglas Lima. Anderson is a crafty veteran who could find a way to win this bout if he can get the fight to the mat. The problem for Anderson is that he’s a fighter that typically fights at lightweight and can struggle with the power of his opponents; especially a heavy-handed welterweight like Paul Daley. The strength advantage is a key factor in this bout, and I see Daley putting away the solid lightweight. The Englishman needs a win, and this is one where he can find the knockout finish. Saad Awad vs. Brennan Ward If Bellator had a “Fight of the Night” Award, this would be my pick for that bout. In a battle of East Coast and West Coast, Brennan Ward welcomes Saad Awad to his home state in a good welterweight matchup. Awad has earned 15 of his 19 career wins by finish while Ward has done the same in 12 of his 13 victories. Awad has certainly faced the higher level of competition facing the likes of Derek Anderson, Will Brooks, and Patricky Friere. He’s not as dynamic as Ward, but he’s got a better chin and that could be the difference in this fight. I expect this bout to be relatively short, but exciting as both fighters hit hard and swing for the fences. Once the total come out, I’ll be looking at the under total in this matchup. Marloes Coenen vs. Talita Nogueira 2011 World Jiu-Jitsu champion Talita Nogueira makes her Bellator debut against former Strikeforce featherweight champion Marloes Coenen. The talented Brazilian has gone quite a bit under the radar, but her record is noteworthy with six wins and six finishes. Coenen looks to get back on the winning track after a stunning loss to Alexis Dufresne in her last bout. Coenen likely will be a sizable favorite in this fight, but she’s vulnerable here. Coenen has been susceptible to submissions in the past, and she’s now tasked with fighting one of the best in MMA in that regard. Phil Davis vs. Liam McGeary Perhaps the highest-level light heavyweight in Bellator history headlines Bellator 163 as Phil Davis challenges Liam McGeary for the Bellator light heavyweight title. The undefeated Englishman had his most marquee win his last time out when he submitted Tito Ortiz in the opening round of the fight. This is a much bigger test for him, as Davis is widely considered a Top 10 light heavyweight and a fringe Top 5 light heavyweight in the world. On the feet, Davis has faced significantly better strikers in Alexander Gustafsson and Anthony Johnson. Davis should have little problem taking McGeary down to the mat. That’s where things can get interesting. The Englishman’s submission skill set off his back is sneaky good. Davis has never been submitted before, so this will be an interesting test for both. Davis is the rightful favorite in this bout to his athletic, experience, and wrestling advantages, but McGeary is certainly capable of putting him in tricky spots.

Written by Jay Primetown

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