Last night, Bellator 63 ran the opening of their season 6 welterweight tournament, and once again Bellator scored some impressive fights with KO’s and submissions to go with two very hard fought battles. Immediately after the tournament, Bellator wasted no time in announcing the semi finals for Bellator 67, scheduled for May 4th in Ontario, Canada. Ben Saunders will be taking on David Rickels, and Bryan Baker gets Karl Amoussou after all four men won their first round matches.
As we get closer to the show, look for the odds to post - http://www.betdsi.com/live-lines/martial-arts/mma-bellator! Check back frequently.
It isn’t going to be easy pinpointing a favorite, as Bellator has done a good job of getting diverse talent. Let’s take a look.
David ‘The Caveman’ Rickles ran over Jordan Smith with punches, leaving his record at a perfect 10-0. Out of respect to Smith, he was a late replacement for possible tournament favorite Brian Foster. Rickles’ record has a lot of submissions as well, but I think Ben Saunders will be too much for Rickles. Saunders flashed his jiu jitsu game in grinding out a win against Raul Amaya. Saunders is known as a striker, and he is incredibly tall for the weight class. His level of competition is much higher as well – Saunders has a 4-3 record in the UFC, before coming to Bellator.
The other bracket is going to be a bit more of a free for all. Bryan Baker outlasted Brazilian Carlos Perreira in his bout, while Karl Amoussou won by rear naked choke over an outmatched Chris Lozano. The tendency here might be to fall in love with Amoussou, who is coming down a weight class and looked dynamite in his opening round match.
But if anyone can handle the initial rush and make a fight out of it it is Baker, who is big and strong and also has more than 20 fights against better competition than Amoussou has faced. I want to find out what Amoussou has in the later rounds, as he has tended to lose decisions throughout his career.
So this leaves a likely tournament final of Ben Saunders taking on Bryan Baker. Not sure on this one here, I like Saunders height and length, especially if he uses his Jiu Jitsu game like he did in his last match, but Baker seems like a horse who can win long fights. This should be a near pick em fight unless something crazy happens in the semi finals.