100% Reviewed
Top 10 Best Fighters (16 Total):
1. Ron Sparks - 93.2
2. Genair da Silva - 92.9
3. Blagoy Ivanov - 92.8
4. Justin Frazier - 91.9
5. Mike Hayes - 91.9
6. Eric Prindle - 91.8
7. Neil Grove - 91.1
8. Josh Quayhagen - 90.4
9. Matt Van Buren - 90.0
10. Abe Wagner - 89.8
Bellator 52: Hayes vs. Grove
Location: Lake Charles, Louisiana
Elevation: 13'
-Fight of the Night-
Ron Sparks vs. Mark Holata
Fighters & Matches 88.7
Top 10 Fighters 91.6
TOTAL 90.2
     These guys clinched with each other, for the entire first round. Since Van Buren was hugging Nichols from behind for most of the round, then I guess I would give him the round? No damage was done to either fighter, and Van Buren secured a takedown in the final minute, but nothing happened on the ground. They finalily started trading some strikes in the second round, and 20 seconds into the round, Nichols threw a knee to Van Buren's groin. Once the fight started back up, guess what happened? They clinched... again... Van Buren threw Nichols to the ground eventually, sort of mounted his back, and punched him in the head until the referee stopped the fight. I'm glad this fight is over. Congrats to Van Buren for finishing his first Bellator fight in the second round.
      Frazier ran into Wilson like a 263 pound bull, plowing him to the ground, grinding him against the cage on the ground, where he spent the next minute or so, punching him in the face with big heavy punches. He mounted him, blasted him with elbows, Wilson gave up his back, Frazier continued to punch Wilson in the head, and the referee was forced to stop the fight. Solid one-sided ass beating delivered by Justin Frazier in his Bellator debut.
      These guys basically stood and traded strikes for 15 minutes, with neither fighter really landing anything Earth shattering. Alexandre sort of slipped and fell at least once in each round, making it look like he was maybe losing the fight. I don't think either fighter really had a clear lead going into the final round though, so just for fun, we'll call it a draw. They continued to trade shots for the duration of the final round, until Quayhagen shot for a takedown with 2 minutes left in the fight. From there, Quayhagen punched Alexandre until the end of the round, and I thought Quayhagen's performance in that final round was enough to win the round for Quayhagen. Decent Bellator debut by both fighters.
(Brabo Choke)
      The first round had both guys standing for 90 seconds or so, until Goldsby threw Silva to the ground. Silva immediately got up and whipped Goldsby to the ground. They continued to scramble for a couple of minutes, with Silva staying on top for most of the rest of the fight. Silva sort of got a standing guillotine, flipped Goldsby backwards to the ground, he threw some knees to the body, transitioned to a deep D'Arce choke, and finished the fight via submission with just over one minute left in the opening round. Really solid display of grappling by Genair da Silva.
      Here we have a couple of big heavyweight bangers, and they were both swinging for the fences for 90 seconds or so, until Sparks cracked Holata's skull with a massive left hand, followed by a series of punches that put Holata on his ass, and then Sparks finished him with punches on the ground. That was another awesome first round KO victory for Ron Sparks.
      Prindle landed some bombs to start the fight, but he threw a kick, Wagner caught it, and took Prindle down one minute into the opening round. Wagner slipped into full mount, postured up, and punched Prindle in the face, but Prindle was able to sweep him, ending up on top inside Wagner's guard. From there, Prindle beat him up a little bit, before Wagner slapped on an armbar. Prindle escaped with 90 seconds left in the round. They spent the rest of the round trading wild punches, Prindle got rocked, and Wagner nearly finished him against the cage. Solid opening round for Wagner.
     Prindle plowed forward in zombie mode in the second round, looking to take Wagner's head off with punches. He rocked him, knocked him down, got side control, and tried to work for a keylock, but Wagner was able to scramble out of that, as they finished the round trading leg locks. I have the fight all tied up going into the final round.
     Wagner shot for a sloppy takedown in the final round, which Prindle stuffed easily, allowing Prindle to end up on top in side control. From there, Prindle beat up Wagner on the ground, moving into full mount, followed by some heavier ground & pound for the rest of the round, leading to a pretty obvious 29-28 unanimous decision victory for Eric Prindle. Pretty exciting fight overall.
Technical Submission
(Guillotine Choke)
      Ivanov unloaded a nice Judo throw on Jensen early in the first round, ending up in full mount, while Jensen held onto his body for dear life. Jensen fought his way back to his feet about halfway through the round. Ivanov showed some solid boxing, moving in, blasting Jensen, and backing out, avoiding shots, while landing some decent punches of his own. Jensen eventually got the body lock, and took Ivanov to the ground, but Ivanov popped right back up immediately. From there, Ivanov continued to beat the shit out of Jensen on the feet with his superior boxing skills. The second round started with a clinch, and again, 30 seconds in, Ivanov tripped Jensen and took him to the ground, this time landing in side control, where he was cranking a keylock, eventually moving into full mount while he continued to crank. It looked like he was going to rip his arm off, and then he eventually gave up on it, postured up, and punched Jensen in the face, a lot. Around the halfway mark of the round, Jensen tried to buck out and get back to his feet, and Ivanov stopped him with a guillotine choke, putting him to sleep. That was a pretty awesome win for Blagoy Ivanov.
      The first round was kind of a slow paced round where they mostly just traded kicks for the first 4 minutes of the round. It was a pretty uneventful round, until Grove rushed in with some violent punches with a minute left in the round, Hayes ducked under them, and took him to the ground, but they popped back up to their feet after only a few seconds. That round was close, but I'm going to score it slightly for Hayes.
     This fight is crazy, because Mike Hayes is a 6'4" heavyweight, and Grove looks like a giant compared to him. With that being said, Grove was mostly moving backwards in the second round, while Hayes picked him apart with his boxing. Grove unloaded a nice combination halfway through the round, but after that, he slowed down again, as Hayes continued to pick him apart with punches & kicks. Hayes really started to unload on Grove in the final minute of the round, even blasting him with a nice head kick. This fight COULD be tied up, but I have it scored 2-0 in favor of Hayes, going into the final round.
     Grove looked a lot more aggressive in the final round, even chasing Hayes around the cage like a gigantic bull, swinging for the fences, rocking Hayes a little bit, until Hayes grabbed him and took him to the ground, slowing him down significantly. Hayes landed in side control, and it looked like he was working for a mounted crucifix, eventually sliding into north-south position. Grove tried to stand up, and Hayes spun around to grab his back. Grove grabbed one of Hayes's legs, and tried to pull him around, but Hayes refused to let go of his back, as he continued to reposition himself, while working for a possible choke. Hayes eventually got sloppy, and Grove was able to pull him around, ending up inside Hayes's open guard. Grove is a beast, and once he got top position, it looked like Hayes could be in trouble, but Hayes somehow swept him, ending up back in side control, finally securing that mounted crucifix with 30 seconds left in the round. Hayes tried to crank an Americana, gave it up, punched Grove several times, and in my opinion, won the round. 29-28 for Hayes in my opinion, and two judges agreed, giving him a very hard fought split-decision.