Bellator 136 Fight Breakdown: Marcin Held vs. Alexander Sarnavskiy

Marcin Held One of the main card bouts at Bellator 136 is a three-round lightweight bout between Marcin Held and Alexander Sarnavskiy. According to the current betting lines available at Several Bookmakers, Sarnavskiy is a-165 favorite (bet $165 to win $100) while Held is a +135 underdog (bet $100 to win $135). MMA oddsmaker Nick Kalikas opened up Held at -135 and Sarnavskiy at -105, and the line has flipped with Held now the underdog. I actually lean towards Held here, especially at the dog price. Here’s why. Sarnavskiy (30-2) is 5-2 overall in Bellator with wins over Dakota Cochrane, Marcus Davis, Ricardo Tirloni, Tony Hervey and Thiago Michel with losses to Will Brooks and Rich Clemenit. The 26-year-old Russian is a finisher with 25 of his career victories coming by way of knockout or submission. He has seven T/KO wins and 18 submissions and is a guy who can finish the fight anywhere it goes. However, while offensively he is a threat, he showed in his two career losses that he doesn’t have the best wrestling and he can be exploited on the ground. There’s no doubt he’s dangerous, but he has some flaws on the mat, and going up against an experienced grappler like Held, that could be an issue. Held (20-3) is the winner of the Bellator season 10 lightweight tournament. The 23-year-old Pole is 9-2 in Bellator with wins over the likes of Patricky Pitbull, Derek Anderson, Ryan Healy, Rich Clementi and Phillipe Nover with his only losses coming to Michael Chandler and Dave Jansen. He is an amazing grappler with 11 tapout wins to his credit, many of those coming by way of heel hook. He doesn’t have great traditional wrestling, but he is effective at wrapping his opponents up and getting them down to the mat in the vein of a Demian Maia. He has improving striking, too, showing his power in his KO win over Healy. He is currently riding a five-fight win streak and with a win over Sarnavskiy, he could be next in line for a lightweight title shot. Sarnavskiy is a very solid fighter in his own right, but I believe Held is one of the most underrated lightweights in the sport, and the fact the line flipped proved it. He will have a massive edge on the ground should it get there, and on the feet he’s rapidly improving as well. I believe Held can either submit or decision Sarnavskiy here, and since I think he should be the favorite here, I like him as a plus-money underdog for a value play.

Written by Adam Martin.

Leave a Reply

Bellator 136’s Will Brooks: ‘Dave Jansen couldn’t bust a grape in a fruit fight’

Boxing Preview: WBA World Cruiserweight On The Line in Moscow Friday