(Eddie Alvarez on top)
Middleweight champion Hector Lombard is being courted by the UFC but Bellatoris producing the next generation of stars such as at BFC 66 April 20th. The event took place at the I-X Center inCleveland with an undercard webcast on Spike.com and a main card televised onMTV2.
Eddie Alvarez was one of the original stars of Bellator, winning thelightweight tournament and defeating UFC vets Roger Huerta and Josh Neer innon-title bouts before defending the title against Pat Curran. The problem is Alvarez lost the title toMichael Chandler, even if it was the “fight of the year” according toBellator. Since Alvarez is too big aname to start over in the tournament but needed a big win to get a rematch againstChandler it made sense for him to fight DREAM champion Shinya Aoki, the onlyother fighter who defeated Alvarez at lightweight. On this night Alvarez not only defeated Aoki,the worst that can be said about this fight is it took Eddie 0:45 longer todefeat Aoki than it took Aoki to defeat Alvarez just over three years ago. Aoki of course tried to take the fight to theground but Alvarez used his wrestling to stay on the feet until a pair ofuppercuts made Aoki stumble and fall. Descending and trapping Aoki against the cage Alvarez unleashed a flurryof strikes until the referee halted the fight.
In the most disappointing fight of the night Brian Rogers was all but certainto defeat replacement Andreas Spang until possibly overconfident Rogers didn’tprotect his head following a punch and Spang countered with a left hook thatKO’d the Strikeforce vet. Spang nowadvances to the middleweight finals on a rather sloppy performance and noquarterfinal victory, a bit of a black eye for Bellator.
Also in the middleweight tournament UFC vet Maiquel Falcao defeated former M-1Global champion Vyacheslav Vasilevsky to win a unanimous decision. Vasilevskyseemed to win the first round using unusual but elegant trip takedowns butround 2 was Falcao’s ground-and-pound while round 3 was Falcao wobblingVasilevsky on the feet before running out the clock with hammerfists on theground.
To few people’s surprise Rick Hawn defeated Lloyd Woodard in the lightweightsemifinals with the end coming just 0:10 into round 2 by KO.
In the closest fight of the night Brent Weedman squeaked out a split decisionover Thiago Silva to win his lightweight semifinal. Silva definitely won the standup, nearlyclosing Weedman’s right eye by the end of the second round and opening a cut onthe left. Takedowns and position howeverwon Weedman the fight as he obtained top position for somewhat effectivestriking in all three rounds.
Bellator are off this coming weekend, returning with BFC 67 May 4th.
BFC 66 results:
Julian Lane def. HoeHolland 2:49 R1 by guillotine choke
Frank Caraballo def. Donny Walker 2:25 R4 by KO
Attila Vegh def. Dan Spohn by split decision
John Hawk def. Marcus Vanttinen by split decision
LW tournament: Brent Weedman def. Thiago Silva by split decision
LW tournament: Rick Hawn def. Lloyd Woodard 0:10 R2 by KO
MW tournament: Maiquel Falcao def. Vyacheslav Vasilevsky by unanimous decision
MW tournament: Andreas Spang def. Brian Rogers 3:34 R2 by KO
Eddie Alvarez def. Shinya Aoki 2:14 R1 by TKO
Jessica Eye def. Anita Rodriguez by unanimous decision