100% Reviewed
Top 10 Best Fighters (20 Total):
1. Thiago Santos (Bellator) - 93.8
2. Eric Prindle - 92.8
3. Jacob Akin - 91.8
4. Kelvin Tiller - 91.3
5. Marcio Navarro - 91.0
6. Jeremy Spoon - 90.7
7. Daniel Gallemore - 90.2
8. E.J. Brooks - 90.1
9. Ben Askren - 89.8
10. Aaron Ely - 89.6
Bellator 56: Askren vs. Hieron
Location: Kansas City, Kansas
Elevation: 869'
-Fight of the Night-
Thiago Santos (Bellator) vs. Neil Grove
Fighters & Matches 88.1
Top 10 Fighters 91.1
TOTAL 89.6
     The first round had Ruffin landing some solid leg kicks, and there was a decent scramble that ended with Ruffin on top. Ruffin wins the first round. The second round had Ruffin taking down Gallemore, but Ruffin was exhausted, so he couldn't really get much offense going beyond the takedown. They eventually stood back up, and Ruffin shot for another takedown. The round ended with Gallemore knocking the exhausted Ruffin to the ground with a nice combination. Ruffin wasn't able to answer the bell for the third round, and therefore, the referee stopped the fight between rounds. Solid win for Daniel Gallemore in his Bellator debut.
(Rear-Naked Choke)
      This fight was all about lunging punches, where both guys would step forward, and then jump forward while throwing a jab. Single shots, not a lot of damage being done. About halfway through the first round, Ely shot for a takedown, went straight to side mount, they scrambled for a second, with Ely ending up on Evinger's back, where he locked on the rear-naked choke for the submission victory. It looked like that choke was deep, but Evinger was able to last more than a minute with Ely squeezing as tightly as possible. This leads me to believe that Ely's "squeeze" isn't nearly as strong as it should be, otherwise he should have been able to finish that choke a little faster. Still, nice first round submission victory in his Bellator debut.
(Rear-Naked Choke)
      This fight started with some sloppy striking, followed by Akin jumping to pull guard, and then he gave up on that, and threw Saudino to the ground, getting on top in Saudino's guard, where he was able to drop some pretty heavy punches. Saudino powered out of that, ending up on top of Akin, where he went for a leg lock, and it looked like he might have a chance of finishing it, but Akin did a great job rolling out of it, immediately jumping onto the back of Saudino, where he finished him off with a rear-naked choke halfway through the first round. Pretty solid fight while it lasted, and really great comeback by Akin.
      It didn't take long for Brooks to grab Souza and throw him to the ground. He followed that up with some big punches on the ground, but Souza got back up pretty quickly. Brooks kicked him in the face on the way up. Souza then landed some decent shots, including a knee to the groin which brought the fight to a halt. Once the fight started back up, they traded a few random strikes, and then Souza kicked Brooks in the dick again. This time the referee took a point from Souza. That brings the score for that round to 10-8 in favor of Brooks.
     Souza tried to pull guard to start the second round, and Brooks brutally slammed him in the process. They stood back up, clinched for a while, threw a double groin shot, which Souza absorbed more damage with. Once the fight started again, Souza tried to pull guard again, and Brooks slammed him again. Souza seems to have a terrible gameplan tonight. Brooks is ahead 20-17, going into the final round.
     The final round was an awkward round, with both guys landing some decent shots, Souza laid on the ground for a while, begging Brooks to join him, and they both clinched for a while, without either fighter really doing much of anything with any sort of heavy point value. Still, Brooks controlled most of that round as well, so in the end, I scored this fight 30-26 for E.J. Brooks, and all 3 judges agreed, giving him the unanimous decision victory.
      Tiller started this fight by kicking Spohn, Spohn fell to the ground, and Tiller went to the ground with him, and there was a weird scramble thing, and they both stood back up, ending in a clinch against the cage. The action turned up once they broke apart, and Tiller beat up Spohn for a minute or so, before Spohn clinched with him again, stalling against the cage for the last couple of minutes of the round. Tiller continued to pick apart Spohn in the second round, Spohn threw a kick, Tiller caught it, and threw him to the ground. Tiller's striking looked really sharp in this fight. Once they were on the ground, Tiller continued to beat up Spohn, cutting him open, as Spohn's head painted the canvas with blood. The second round was more of the same, with some solid striking going both ways, and then Tiller took Spohn to the ground and dominated him. This fight was easily a 30-27 win for Tiller in my opinion, but for some reason, one of the judges gave the fight to Spohn, which is absolutely ridiculous. So yeah, I'm glad Tiller won this fight, and it was a fun fight to watch for 15 minutes.
      The first round was basically a boxing match, with Bears picking apart Navarro with his punch combinations. Navarro looked like he was looking to counter, but that just resulted in him landing a lot less. He knocked Bears down in the final 20 seconds, and then mounted him, so that made the round pretty close, but for the most part, Bears controlled 4.5 minutes of that round, so... I don't know... I'm going to give that round to Navarro based on the fact that he did the most damage there in the final seconds.
     They traded some decent strikes to start the second round, and then Bears kicked Navarro in the dick. Once the fight started back up, they continued to strike at a pretty decent pace with each other, but neither fighter seems to have significant power behind their punches. I gave this round to Bears, so I have the score all tied up going into the final round.
     Navarro spent the final round beating the living shit out of Bears, rocked him with strikes, and then mounting him, where he continued to pound on him with heavy strikes from various top positions. Bears got his ass absolutely stomped in that final round, and regardless of how you scored the rest of the fight, Navarro deserves to win the fight based on his performance in the final round. Bears was a bloody mess, and Navarro still basically looked fine. Two of the judges agreed, giving Navarro the split-decision victory.
      Ron Sparks came out throwing dynamite at Prindle's face, but he missed with his combination. They danced around for 30 seconds or so, Sparks threw a big right leg kick, Prindle countered it with a perfectly timed left hand to the chin, and Sparks went down for the count. Prindle immediately tried to cuddle with Sparks, apologizing for his actions. Prindle is a super nice dude, but I have to be honest, if someone knocked me out by punching me, the last thing I would want to see when I wake up, is their face inches away from mine, breathing all over me. But yeah, still, this was a badass KO victory for Eric Prindle.
      Schindler was picking apart Spoon on the feet to start this fight, they went to the ground, there was a wild scramble, both guys grabbed each other's backs, with Schindler ending up on top, in control. The last half of that round was spent with both guys wildly wrestling with each other, trading positions, but Schindler won the ground game for the most part before they stood back up. Round one goes to Schindler.
     The second round had both guys trading on the feet, until Schindler took Spoon to the ground again. Spoon was able to get back to his feet halfway through the round. They spent the rest of the round boxing, as Spoon was beating up Schindler's face with crisp boxing. That round could maybe go either way, depending on the value of Schindler's takedown, but I gave that round to Spoon, and have it all tied up going into the final round.
     The final round was a decent little brawl, with both fighters landing some solid shots, but for the most part, Schindler's face was busted up & bloody, and Spoon looked fine at the end of the fight, so I scored this fight 29-28 in favor of Spoon. All 3 judges agreed, giving the fight to Spoon via unanimous decision.
(Rear-Naked Choke)
      These guys are both fucking massive. Grove started the fight by refusing to touch gloves, and then throwing a MASSIVE overhand right, but it didn't seem to do much damage. They circled around each other for a few seconds, and then Santos threw a massive overhand right of his own, knocking Grove to the ground. Santos jumped on his back, locked on a rear-naked choke, and finished the fight by submission in under a minute, and after Grove tapped, Grove also passed out. That was an insane win for Thiago Santos in his second fight in Bellator.
      Askren shot for a wild takedown early, Hieron stuffed it, and beat up Askren a little bit on the ground. They stood back up, and Hieron spent the rest of the round stuffing takedowns, and picking apart Askren on the feet. I scored that first round for Hieron. Askren spent the next 3 rounds, taking Hieron to the ground, and beating him up, while holding him down for as long as he possibly could. Hieron needs to finish the fight in the 5th round if he wants to win this one. The third round was kind of close, as Hieron was able to keep it standing for a little bit longer, but I don't think he did enough to win that round, considering Askren still took him down, and held his own while standing. Hieron was able to keep the fight standing in the final round as well, even kicking Askren with a spinning back kick which knocked Askren on his ass, which results in a 48-47 scorecard from me, giving the victory to Ben Askren. That was probably the toughest fight yet for Askren, but yeah, he's still undefeated. Two of the judges scored the fight for him, for the win via split-decision. That was a really close fight.