December will prove to be an extremely busy month for Bellator. Despite a new model under Scott Coker, which was supposed to see fewer events of a higher quality, the promotion will put on four events across a 14-day span during the month. One can’t help but think these would be far more intriguing as one or two cards rather than four, but instead Bellator will be airing a tape-delayed card from Italy against a UFC Pay-Per-View on Saturday night. Bellator 168 will be the second foray into Italy from the company, and while it was originally scheduled to be headlined by a middleweight title rematch between Rafael Carvalho and Melvin Manhoef, it will now see the most recognizable Italian fighter in the main event. Alessio Sakara upset Brian Rogers in the co-main event of the last Italian event, and he will remain at light heavyweight to take on fellow UFC veteran Joey Beltran. Beyond that, the card features Bellator veterans against fighters who have worked their way up from the European scene. Brazilians Philipe Lins and Kleber Silva will fight for their spot in the light heavyweight division. Lins was looked at as one of the best prospects in Bellator a couple of years ago, but a knee injury suffered against Kelly Anundson in 2014 gave him his only loss and put him on the shelf. He returned in July with a TKO over Guillherme Viana and now faces veteran Silva. Finally, Goiti Yamauchi squares off with Valeriu Mircea in the featherweight division. Yamauchi is 6-2 inside the Bellator cage, and he picked up a win over Ryan Couture via first-round submission just seven weeks ago. Mircea has an impressive looking record, especially for someone coming out of the nascent Italian MMA scene. However, expectations should be tempered given that he suffered a loss to Cody McKenzie in May of this year before going on his current five-fight win streak. MMA oddsmaker Nick Kalikas opened the betting odds for the main card of Bellator 168 today at Several Bookmakers. Remember that this card is airing on tape delay, and actually takes place Saturday afternoon if you’re looking to get bets in. ——————– Bellator 168: Sakara vs. Beltran DECEMBER 10, 2016 Mandela Forum | Florence, Italy MAIN CARD (Spike TV, 9pm ET – Tape Delayed) Joey Beltran +110 Alessio Sakara -150 Over 1.5 -150 Under 1.5 +100 – Kleber Raimundo Silva +285 Philipe Lins -405 Over 1.5 -155 Under 1.5 +115 – Valeriu Mircea +385 Goiti Yamauchi -585 Over 1.5 +110 Under 1.5 -150 – ——————– Brad’s Analysis: Given that Beltran’s chin seems to be fading, I guess I have to favor Sakara here, but I don’t feel good about it. Sakara hasn’t looked good in a fight in a long time, but against Rogers in his last fight had a decent showing. Being in the main event in Italy could give him a boost as well, but if he ends up getting ground out against the cage by Beltran, I wouldn’t be shocked at all. The chalk should continue as Lins re-establishes himself amongst the top 205ers in Bellator. Silva is normally quite difficult to finish, but that won’t be enough to win him a bout where he is simply outmatched in every phase. I do expect Lins to get the stoppage at some point, but it will be nice to see him go deeper in a fight that he normally does and get a sense of how his cardio will hold up against the best in the division. If you get submitted by 2016 Cody McKenzie, you’re getting submitted by Yamauchi. Sorry Valeriu.