Bellator MMA is bringing The Toughest Tournament In Sports back to Southern California as Pechanga Resort & Casino hosts the heavyweight tournament semifinals Friday, April 11th live on Spike TV. The night will also feature a welterweight tournament semifinal as Nathan Coy battles Adam McDonough, along with a light heavyweight showdown between Vladimir Matyushenko and Joey Beltran.
Bellator 116 will be broadcast live from Pechanga Resort & Casino beginning at 6 p.m. PST on Spike TV. The preliminary card will be streamed live and free exclusively on Spike.com starting at 4 p.m. Tickets for the event are on sale now and can be purchased by visiting Pechanga.com, Bellator.com, or by calling the Pechanga Box Office at 877-711-2946 or visiting between noon and 8 p.m. daily.
The Spike.com preliminary card will be feature a number of Bellator fan favorites, including a bantamweight fight feature between “Baby” Joe Taimanglo taking on California native Rob Emerson. Taimanglo will be making his Bellator Bantamweight debut on April 11th, and is ready for the challenges that the veteran Emerson will deliver.
Bellator welterweights collide when former Bellator tournament finalist Ron Keslar meets Karo Parisyan. Keslar made his way to the tournament finals with wins over Sergio Melo Jr. and War Machine before suffering a loss to eventual Bellator Welterweight Tournament winner Rick Hawn. Parisyan also finds himself in similar standing after losing to Hawn at Bellator 95. Both welterweights have their sights set on getting back into the win column, and fireworks should be expected on April 11th.
Bellator fan favorite Joe Pacheco returns to the Bellator cage in a middleweight affair against the undefeated Brandon Halsey. Both fighters are at the doorstep for the next Bellator Middleweight Tournament, and a win for either could propel their career to the next level.
Known as one of the best light heavyweight prospects in the game, Brazilian knockout artist Philipe Lins will make his Bellator debut on April 11th against Travis Clark. All eyes will be on Lins as the Nova Uniao product looks to prove why he is considered one of the best up and coming fighters in the world.
Featherweights collide as Brandon Bender meets Southern California native meets Mario Navarro, while welterweights square off as Ricky Rainey faces Andy Murad.
The full card for Bellator 116:
Bellator Heavyweight Tournament Semifinal: Lavar Johnson (18-8) vs. Blagoi Ivanov (10-0)
Bellator Heavyweight Tournament Semifinal: Mighty Mo (6-2) vs. Alexander Volkov (19-4)
Bellator Welterweight Tournament Semifinal: Nathan Coy (14-4) vs. Adam McDonough (10-0)
Light Heavyweight Feature Fight: Joey Beltran (14-10) vs. Vladimir Matyushenko (27-7)
Bantamweight Feature Fight: Joe Taimanglo (19-5-1) vs. Rob Emerson (15-10)
Welterweight Feature Fight: Ron Keslar (11-5) vs. Karo Parisyan (22-10)
Middleweight Feature Fight: Joe Pacheco (7-1) vs. Brandon Halsey (5-0)
Light Heavyweight Feature Fight: Philipe Lins (7-1) vs. Travis Clark (7-2)
Featherweight Feature Fight: Brandon Bender (11-1) vs. Mario Navarro (4-3)
Welterweight Feature Fight: Ricky Rainey (6-2) vs. Andy Murad (6-1)
Middleweight Feature Fight: Dave Vitkay (13-12-1) vs. Keith Berry (15-12)
Light Heavyweight Feature Fight: Carlos Eduardo (11-2) vs. Virgil Zwicker (12-3)
For more information, visit Bellator.com, follow Bellator on Twitter @BellatorMMA, follow Bellator Chairman & CEO Bjorn Rebney @BjornRebney and check out Bellator on Facebook at www.facebook.com/BellatorMMA