Last night, Bellator 109 marked the season finale for the promotion with another great night of fights. In the main event, Alexander Shlemenko put his Middleweight title on the line against heavy handed Doug Marshall. Two tournament finals were on the line as well last night; the Lightweight tournament final between Will Brooks and Alexander Sarnavskiy, and the Middleweight tournament final between Rick Hawn and Ron Keslar. Overall, it was another successful night of fights for Bellator, capping off a great season.
Lightweight Tournament Finals: Will Brooks defeats Alexander Sarnavskiy by Unanimous Decision (30-26, 30-27, 30-27)
This fight was not the greatest battle you will ever see, but nonetheless Will Brooks got the job done. After some successful takedown defense from Sarnavskiy in round 1, it looked like Brooks may be in trouble on the feet. Round 2 Brooks was able to get it to the mat and completely dominated in top control for most of the round. Round 3 was more of the same, with Brooks busting up Sarnavskiy’s already bloodied face. It looked like Brooks was going to ride out the decision victory, but he actually attempted a rear naked choke late. Unfortunately, he could not get the finish, but he did get the win.
It will be interesting to see when Brooks will fight for the Lightweight title. At this point, it is almost set in stone that Michael Chandler and Eddie Alvarez will battle in their trilogy fight before anyone else gets their shot. This leaves Dave Jansen and Will Brooks in limbo as tournament winners.
Welterweight Tournament Final: Rick Hawn defeats Ron Keslar by KO (Punches) Round 3 (0:55)
Last night Rick Hawn won his second Bellator tournament. Hawn won the Lightweight tournament back in season 6 by defeating Brett Cooper. He subsequently lost to former Lightweight champion, Michael Chandler, in Round 2 via rear naked choke.
Hawn took on Ron Keslar in the Welterweight tournament final for a shot at the vacant Welterweight title. Keslar landed the early blows that stunned Hawn. At one point, Hawn folded from a brutal knee to the body delivered from Keslar. By the middle of the first round, Hawn had found his range and both men were exchanging. The second round was Hawn keeping Keslar at distance with a stinging jab. Hawn had taken over the fight at this point with his striking. The third round and finishing sequence saw Hawn nail Keslar with a overhand right as Keslar moved in for the clinch. Hawn locked up the clinch himself and threw a bevvy of uppercuts, rocking Keslar. Two stinging jabs and two big overhand rights that followed had Keslar in all sorts of trouble. A few more uppercuts and jabs had Keslar on wobbly legs and his hands too low. As Keslar circled away from the cage, he was cracked with a big overhand right that put him out for good.
Rick Hawn will now face season 8 Welterweight tournament winner, Douglas Lima, for the vacated Welterweight title.
Bellator Middleweight Championship: Alexander Shlemenko defeats Doug Marshall by KO (Liver punch) Round 1 (4:28)
Former WEC Light Heavyweight Champion, Doug Marshall, had come into this bout against Alexander Shlemenko on an absolute tear. Four straight victories, three of them by violent KO, had many believing that he may be the next Bellator Middleweight champion. Alexander Shlemenko disagreed.
In the early going it seemed Shlemenko was not willing to strike with Marshall. Shlemenko shot in for a takedown almost immediately, but Marshall got back to his feet quickly. Heavy leather was thrown by both men before Shlemenko went in for the takedown again, but he was stuffed. Another wild exchange of hay makers led to another Shlemenko takedown, but Marshall was quick to his feet again. They started to open up a bit more in the striking department as Shlemenko landed some hard kicks and knees to the body. Marshall was answering, but not putting together combinations. Marshall lunged in with some violent hooks that missed. Shlemenko countered with a brutal right hook to the body, and Marshall doubled over in pain, but kept standing. Shlemenko attacked with a body kick, a knee to the body, and several more hooks in the clinch. Ultimately, another big body shot landed for Shlemenko and put out Marshall for good.
Here are the rest of the results from Bellator 109:
Lester Caslow defeats Jay Haas via submission (guillotine choke) Round 3 (2:44)
Brent Primus defeats Brett Glass via submission (rear naked choke) Round 1 (3:20)
Bubba Jenkins defeats Ian Rammel via TKO (punches) Round 3, (2:38)
Goiti Yamauchi defeats Saul Almeida via knockout (punches) Round 1 (2:04)
Blagoi Ivanov defeats Keith Bell via submission (rear naked choke) Round 1 (3:59)
Mike Bannon defeats Ahsan Abdulla via technical submission (arm triangle choke) Round 1 (1:51)
Terry Etim defeats Patrick Cenoble via unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 30-26)