Bellator 233: Andrew Kapel sends King Mo into retirement with first-round KO

One fighter’s start is another’s end at Bellator 233, as Andrew Kapel, making his promotional debut, sends Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal into retirement with a first-round knockout.

Andrew Kapel defeated Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal via KO, Round 1 – 1:22 at Bellator 233 on Friday, Nov. 8, 2019, live from the WinStar World Casino in Thackerville, OK.

This was the final fight in the career of Lawal, a former Strikeforce light heavyweight champion and the winner of the 2015 RIZIN Heavyweight Grand Prix and 2013 Bellator Summer Series light heavyweight tournament. He also headlined Bellator’s first pay-per-view event, Bellator 120 in 2017, with Quinton “Rampage” Jackson.

“Without risk, the opportunities don’t come. Hard to put into words,” Kapel said in his post-fight interview. “Respect to “King Mo.” I saw his debut in Japan years ago. The dude is a legend.

“I’m here. There’s going to be more where this came from.”

Here’s how the fight played out:

Round 1

The two meet in the center. Jab by Kapel. Front kick and another jab. Leg kick by Kapel. Lawal with a body shot. One-two by Lawal. Jab by Kapel. Big right hand by Lawal. Kapel flashed the left and threw a leg kick. Lawal misses a sharp left hook. Front kick by Kapel is answered by a combination by Lawal. Lawal caught a right front kick by Kapel, but upon Lawal going in for a hook, Kapel catches him with a quick, sharp right hand and “King Mo” goes down! Kapel delivers a few more shots on the ground, but Lawal is done! Ref finally steps in. Lawal’s career ends with a first-round KO loss.

Lawal has been one of the most noted names of Strikeforce, Bellator and RIZIN in his career. Lawal briefly held Strikeforce’s 205-pound title and once challenged for the interim Bellator light heavyweight title. Lawal was on a seven-fight win streak when he won the RIZIN heavyweight tournament but has struggled over the last few years, dropping five of his last seven.

This fight marked the Bellator debut for Kapel, who entered this bout on a four-fight win streak. He last competed in February for the Hoosier FC promotion, submitting Tyler Hufnagle in the first round to win the promotion’s middleweight title.

Bellator 233 took place on Friday, Nov. 8, 2019, live from the WinStar World Casino in Thackerville, OK. Follow along with FanSided MMA for all your live results and highlights.

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