Now a champion, Pat Curran is a great story for Bellator. Coming into his first Bellator tournament, there were many, including myself, who felt that Curran was nothing more than a pretty good regional level fighter. Curran proved the doubters wrong at 155, beating Roger Huerta and winning the lightweight tournament. While he was unable to wrestle the title away from Eddie Alvarez, he dropped to featherweight, won that tournament and now left Joe Warren in a pile against the fence to take the 145 pound crown.
He isn’t a guy I think anyone would pick to beat Jose Aldo and compete for the best featherweight in the world, but Curran has emerged as a legitimate force in mixed martial arts and certainly has a claim as a top five featherweight with his wins over Warren and Marlon Sandro.
- The pacing of these shows is brutal and there is no way it ins’t a factor in not growing the audience. One hour and fifty-five minutes into the show we’d been through three fights, one of which ended in the first round and were just getting around to announcing the main event fighters. It’s such an unbelievable amount of work to make it to the main event between all the commercials and dead time. There aren’t many casual fans willing to go through all that time to get so little in terms of in-cage action, especially with the lack of “big names” on the Bellator roster.
- I never want to see Jeff Malott referee another fight as long as I live. His job in the main event was flat out dangerous. He was right to not stop the fight when Warren was hit with the knee that set up the finish, but as Curran poured on clean shots with the fence acting as the only thing keeping Warren from crashing to the mat, it was time to stop the fight. At one point Curran’s legs were clearly gone but rather than saving a fighter who was doing nothing to fight back and was eating clean shots, Malott waited for Curran to land enough punches to knock Warren completely out. It is disgusting and I sincerely hope Malott is not allowed to put another fighter’s health at risk. He proved himself incompetent tonight.
- Joe Warren’s “mean face” when he’s “psyched up” is totally laughable.
- Pat Curran is lucky that he has the ability to land with power because his tendency to sit back doesn’t do a good enough job of establishing that he is doing work deserving of taking the round. I scored rounds one and two for Curran but it would not have shocked me at all to have seen all three judges score it for Warren simply because it appeared he was doing more while Curran sat back.
- When none of the fighters involved with your middleweight tournament are anywhere near ranked, I don’t think calling them “some of the best middleweights in the world” is all that accurate. I mean, I get marketing, but man…when your announcer is saying a fighter’s name and then asks if he pronounced it right, he shouldn’t follow that up by lumping him in with the best in the world.
- Daniel Straus looked good while beating Jeremy Spoon but he still doesn’t seem like a real force. He was beating Spoon clearly but seems to lack that next gear to really destroy guys he is better than.
- Mike Corey recovered well from a rough first round against Ronnie Mann. Once he figured out that Mann couldn’t deal with his takedowns, there wasn’t a whole that Mann could do to change the course of the fight. Corey just worked takedowns and fired away from top position. I have a feeling that if elbows were legal, Corey would have completely wrecked Mann’s face.
- Roberto Vargas showed a great chin against Marlon Sandro, but still got steamrolled. Sandro is extremely wild but still found a consistent home for his strikes and had Vargas reeling around the cage for much of the fight before sinking in his choke and finishing the fight.
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