Bellator’s seventh season kicks off this weekend with BFC 74, the start of the welterweight tournament. BFC 74 takes place at Caesar’s Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City, NJ with a main card broadcast live on MTV2.
In the welterweight tournament the fight to watch is definitely former champion Lyman Good vs. Jim Wallhead. Both are known for their standup but Wallhead is thought to have the edge on the ground with his judo background and Good the edge with all-out aggression. Good lost the title to Ben Askren in October 2010 and lost to Rick Hawn in the season 4 semifinals but also has wins over Chris Lozano and most recently LeVon Maynard for a total record of 12-2. Wallhead also has a loss to Hawn from March 2011 but has since returned to the UK where he defeated UFC vet Frank Trigg and former EliteXC contender Joey Villasenor to make 23-6 his record.
The rest of the tournament is a little hard to get excited over mainly because the fighters aren’t well known yet or have not made a good impression. Former Dream champion and Strikeforce vet Marius Zaromskis is arguably the most technical striker of the group but his two fights agains t Waachim Spiritwolf in Bellator have been the low points of those cards and raised questions regarding his ground game, his opponent Nordine Taleb is 8-1 with a seven-fight win streak but against relatively unknown fighters. Tim Welch and Michail Tsarev are both new to Bellator with Tsarev apparently having the edge. Last but not least Jordan Smith’s Bellator debut was disappointing as he lost in 0:22 by KO while Andrey Koreshkov is 10-0 coming off an impressive TKO of Derrick Krantz in what appears to be the most one-sided match.
On the undercard Munah Holland vs. Michelle Ould looks interesting. Holland has been tearing up the cage for almost two years with a win over Marianna Kheyfets in BFC in March followed by a KO of BodogFIGHT vet Carina Damm in Matrix Fights in July. Ould is a late addition with a record of 6-4, two wins in a row and last known fighting out of Team Quest.
BW: Kenny Foster vs.Claudio Ledesma
WBW: Munah Holland vs.Michelle Ould
FW: Jay Haas vs.Brylan Van Artsdalen
LW: Derrick Kennington vs.Phillipe Nover
FW: Alexandre Bezerra vs.Matt McCook
FW: Casey Johnson vs.Will Martinez
WW: Nordine Taleb vs.Marius Zaromskis
WW: Jordan Smith vs.Andrey Koreshkov
WW: Michail Tsarev vs.Tim Welch
WW: Lyman Good vs.Jim Wallhead