Bellator Middleweight World Champion Gegard Mousasi (47-7-2) marked his first title defense against John Salter at the main event of Bellator 264, clinching a 3rd round TKO victory at the Mohegan Sun Arena on Friday.
Mousasi, who clinched the Bellator middleweight title for the second time in his career, had defeated former titlist Douglas Lima at Bellator 250 back in October last year and returned to the cage after a gap of almost ten months.
The former UFC fighter, who is one of the most dominant veterans in Bellator with a 5-1 promotional record, opened up the first round with striking and trying to close the distance with John Salter.
Salter, a ground and pound expert, took down Mousasi and kept him on the canvas for the rest of the first round. The second round saw Mousasi finding some opening to make connections, but Salter took the champion down to the ground once again.
The third round saw the challenger losing his breath after two rounds of ground game, and Mousasi shifted the momentum of the match by taking advantage of the fatigued Salter, and stuffed a couple of takedowns to get on top of his opponent to start pounding.
At the 2:07 minute mark in the third round, the referee Dan Mirgiliata decided to step in and halt Mousasi’s barrage of blows on the grounded Salter, awarding the champion a win by TKO.
— BellatorMMA (@BellatorMMA) August 14, 2021
“I told them that I’m way stronger than people think,” said Mousasi after the fight, “I may look skinny but I’m way stronger. I put my weight on him on top and hurt him with punches. I made him feel the pressure. It was a five-rounder so in my mind I said I don’t need to do everything now.”
Check out the full Bellator 264 fight card results below
- Gegard Mousasi (c) def. John Salter via third-round TKO (punches)
- Andrey Koreshkov def. Sabah Homasi via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-26, 30-26)
- Raufeon Stots def. Magomed Magomedov via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)
- Davion Franklin def. Everett Cummings via first-round knockout (kick)
- Khadzhi Bestaev def. Ty Gwerder via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
- Pam Sorenson def. Roberta Samad via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
- Jeffrey Glossner def. Sebastian Ruiz via unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)
- Jon McNeil def. Orlando Mendoza via third-round TKO (punches)
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