In the co-main event of Bellator’s pay-per-view debut, former champion Michael Chandler and Will Brooks entered the cage in a bout for the interim belt. Chandler was initially slated to face off against champion Eddie Alvarez in the main event, but Alvarez suffered a concussion just one week before the fight. Brooks stepped up on short notice, which is no easy task against a fighter of Chandler’s caliber.
Round 1: After some brief exchanges on the feet to start the opening round, Chandler relied on his wrestling to overpower Brooks and place him on the mat as the former champion started to rain down some ground-and-pound.Chandler controlled a majority of the fight on the ground as he appeared to be doing his best to simply wear out Brooks in what was a clear round for Chandler.
Round 2: Chandler continued to hang on Brooks when the second round began, as he pressed Brooks up against the cage. Brooks did get out to a distance where he attempted to open up his striking, but Chandler shot right back in and landed another takedown. Brooks had a lot more success in the round, however, as he finished by taking Chandler’s back and threatening with a rear-naked choke. Chandler was able to spin around and end up on top as he finished the round.
Round 3: Brooks was able to once again get the favorable position in the third round by taking Chandler’s back and again working for the rear-naked choke. This time, Brooks got the body lock and began to impose his will. Brooks transitioned in to the full mount where he rained down some heavy ground-and-pound that opened up a cut on Chandler’s head. Chandler briefly escaped from the bad position, but he ended up right back on the ground. When Chandler did get back to his feet, Brooks began unloading some heavy strikes before taking the fat back to the mat and immediately taking Chandler’s back yet again.
Round 4: Chandler seemed to hurt Brooks with a shot, but it didn’t last long as Brooks used another takedown to get the fight where he was having success. Like clockwork, Brooks was on Chandler’s back. Chandler was hanging tough and eventually reversed the position to get Brooks on his back, but the referee stood the two men back up after Chandler sat in Brooks’ guard. After the fight was back on their feet, it was quickly halted after an illegal blow from Will Brooks.When the action restarted, you guessed it, Brooks took Chandler down and secured his back.
Round 5: Chandler got Brooks on his back midway through the final round, but was unable to hold him down. Chandler tried desperately to get back on the mat with top control, but he didn’t seem to have much of anything left in the tank. However, you can never count Chandler out and he came back with a huge shot that hurt Brooks and sent him crumbling to the mat. Chandler delivered some big shots once Brooks hit the mat and then began to work for an arm triangle. Brooks survived, but Chandler went to the mount and finished out the round on top.
Official Result: Will Brooks def. Michael Chandler via split-decision (48-47, 47-48, 48-46)
Photo Credit: Esther Lin of MMAFighting.com
Below are the up-to-date results for tonight’s event:.
- Quinton “Rampage” Jackson vs. Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal
- Will Brooks def. Michael Chandler via split-decision (48-47, 47-48, 48-47)
- Tito Ortiz def. Alexander Shlemenko via technical submission (arm triangle) — Round 1, 2:27
- Alexander Volkov def. Blagoi Ivanov via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 2, 1:08
- Michael Page def. Ricky Rainey via KO (punch) – Round 1, 4:29
- Cheick Kongo def. Erick Smith via TKO (strikes) — Round 2, 4:35
- Marcin Held def. Nate Jolly via submission (armbar) — Round 1, 4:20
- Fabricio Guerreiro def. Shahbulat Shamhalaev via submission (kimura) — Round 1, 3:29
- Goiti Yamauchi def. Mike Richman via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
- Austin Lyons def. Zach Underwood via technical decision (30-27, 29-28, 30-27)
- Mike Wessel def. Justin Frazier via TKO (punches) – Round 1, 4:28
- Ben Brewer def. Andy Uhrich via knockout (strikes) – Round 2, 2:40
- Codie Shuffield def. Anthony Lemon via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 2, 2:15
- Brian Hall def. Cortez Phelia via TKO (punches) – Round 3, 0:24