Bellator 277: Linton Vassell pulls off miraculous first-round comeback over Tim Johnson (Video)

Linton Vassell pulls off a miraculous first-round comeback over Tim Johnson at Bellator 277.

The Bellator 277 main card got off to a wild start between two top heavyweight contenders. Bellator heavyweight Linton Vassell looked down and out in the first round against Tim Johnson, but he pulled off one of the most miraculous wins of his career.

Johnson started to find a groove with a big right-hand midway through the first round. He was able to drop Vassell briefly before securing side control.

But Vassell was not to be deterred against Johnson. After almost getting knocked out by Johnson, he reversed position into top mount and landed some heavy ground-and-pound strikes.

After getting Johnson’s back, he was able to land some heavy elbows and finish Johnson via TKO.

Linton Vassell called out former interim champion Valentin Moldavsky following the win

Johnson came into the fight looking to get back on the winning track following back-to-back losses to Fedor Emelianenko and Valentin Moldavsky. His most recent loss came via first-round knockout from an Emelianenko right hook.

Before his pair of defeats, Johnson earned three-straight victories over Cheick Kongo, Matt Mitrione, and Tyrell Fortune. He earned an interim heavyweight title shot against Moldavsky, losing via a unanimous decision.

Vassell had been on a roll with three-straight wins of his own, including most recently over Fortune at Bellator 271. He also earned finishes over the likes of Sergei Kharitonov and Liam McGeary.

The victory over Johnson puts Vassell in the heavyweight title shot conversation, and he could face a top contender for his next Bellator outing.

Bellator 277: AJ McKee vs. Patricio Pitbull 2 took place on Friday, April 15, 2022, live from the SAP Center in San Jose, CA. Follow along with FanSided MMA who is onsite for all your news and highlights.