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I am covering Bellator 28 as it happens live from the Mahalia Jackson Theater in New Orleans, Louisiana. This is the first ever Bellator event without a single tournament bout on the card. Tonight's card starts live at 8:30pm EST.
Preemption*** Bellator was preempted by a New England Patriots coverage show and started right as the first bout decision was announced.
Fight 1: Georgi Karakhanyan defs. Anthony Leone via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)
Fight 2: Matt Horwich (25-15)vs. Eric Schambari (12-2)
Schambari lands a jab to the body. Horwich lands a right. Schambari comes in with a flurry, but Horwich defends. They go back and for with combos that do not land clean. Schambari lands a right hand that does not phase Horwich. Horwich moves in with a lazy combo and clinches. Schambari breaks and lands a left jab. They clinch again with Horwich looking for a submission and ties up Schambari arm. He winks at on of the commentators as he hears his name mentioned. They are back up, and they exchange and tie up. Schambari with his back on the cage in the clinch. Horwich lands two knees to the body. Schambari goes for a takedown while Horwich is on the cage and Horwich goes for a standing kimura. Horwich cuts the left eyebrow of Schambari with a quick shot. They tie up and Schambari almost gets a takedown as the round ends.
Schambari shoots and takes Horwich down. Schambari tries to work in Horwich’s guard, but Horwich stands up. Schambari pushes Schambari to the cage, and Horwich controls the wrist. Schambari gets Horwich down to his knees, but he stands back up. Schambari will not let this takedown go. Finally, Schambari backs off. Schambari with a stiff left jab, then a combo. Horwich keeps coming forward. Schambari shoots and Horwich defends by reaching for the left arm to attempt a kimura. Schambari pushes Horwich to the cage while still struggling for the take down. Horwich is still looking for the kimura with ten seconds left. The bell rings.
Schambari starts to stick and move and lands some combos. Horwich keeps coming and lands a straight left hand. Horwich throws a body kick and Schambari almost catches the kick. Horwich lands a kick to the body and Schambari lands an overhand right. Schambari shoots and Horwich is back at that kimura. Horwich is on his knees, but he stands up. Schambari’s hips are up hi, but he gets the takedown. Horwich closes guard. Schambari tries to pass, butt both fighters end up standing. Schambari immediately takes Horwich down hard. Horwich is fishing for a sub from the bottom, and Schambari appears to back of and then rushes Horwich before he can stand up with a right hand and lands back in guard. The bell rings.
Schambari def. Horwich via Split Decision
Fight Rating ** This was not an exciting fight. Horwich kept coming forward as expected and Schambari’s shot was awkward. Each round was similar to the one before it.
Fight 3: Rich Clementi (37-16-1) vs. Carey Vanier (8-3)
They touch gloves and dance around. Vanier lands a light left hand, and goes in for a combo. Clementi takes Vanier down and Clementi mounts him and then takes his back. Vanier turns around and Clementi takes his back again and slaps on a body triangle. Vanier tries to stand up, but he cannot hold Clementi weight. Clementi works to find a submission. Vanier tries to turn out of this, but Clementi has that triangle on tight as he works for the rear naked choke. Varnier almost spins out and Clementi goes for the kimura. Vanier is now in Clementi closed guard. Varnier stands up and tries to land a shot and Clementi gets an armbar. Varnier shakes him off, stacks up and lands a right hand. The bell rings.
Varnier lands an outside leg kick. Clementi tries to get inside a bit on Vanier with a combo. The exchange kicks. Varnier lands two kicks to the body and then Clementi shoots. Vanier holds the cage and is warned. He sprawls, but Clementi takes him down. Vanier tries to stand against the cage and Clementi takes him down. Vanier is in Clementi’s closed guard. He works light ground and pound, and then stands up. The both land a right hand. Clementi goes for a takedown, but Vanier has Clementi in a guillotine as they fall. Clementi gets out. Vanier with another guillotine attempt, and again Clementi gets out. The stand up while locked and Vanier falls into Clementi guard. Clementi works a few punches to the head off his back, and then the bell rings.
Vanier lands a great left hand. Vanier misses a head kick and Clementi shoots. Vanier almost lips but he sprawls hard. Vanier is in side control attempting a choke. Vanier gets Clementi back for a second and then Clementi rolls and stands. Clementi is hit with a big knee, but he shakes it off. Vanier has Clementi down and sitting against the cage. Vanier gets his back and Clementi is bent over. Varnier kneed him visiouly to the face. He does it again. Vanier is pissed as Varnier’s knees are illeagle since Clementi was in a three-point stance. The ref calls time and the Clementi’s new cut is greased up. Clementi was mad at the ref not Vanier.
The reset and Clementi goes for a standing guillotine, and Varnier takes him down against the cage. Now they are against the cage. Vanier looks like he is ready for a suplex. Clementi rolls out with and Vanier smothers. Clementi tries to roll to guard, but no luck. Back on there feet as the clock winds down Vanier goes for a guillotine, and it is pretty tight. Clementi falls back and tries to work out of it as the bell rings. He smiles and seems to say something to Vanier in the vain of that being a close submission. (It is hard to read lips when mouthguards are in.)
Vanier defs. Clementi via Split Decision
Fight Rating **+/***- Clementi showed he is a veteran as he kept Vanier in danger for most of the fight, or almost half of it according to the judges score cards. Fans booed as this fight could have easily gone to Clementi.
Fight 4: Eric Larkin (2-0)vs. Marcus Andrusia (1-0)
Larkin with a head kick that sends Andrusia back. Larkin then slaps on a guillotine and has it tight even though he is not in guard. Larkin gets mount with the choke on tight, but lets it go. He smothers the guard and lands shots from the top. Larkin in side control, but stands up and lands a hard left hand from up high. Larkin mounts to almost take the back, and grounds and pounds something fierce. Larkin lands a hard left hand. Now LArkin goes for the guillotine while standing and then goes to his knees as Andrusia taps while sitting down in the choke.
Larkin des. Andrusia via Submission (Guillotine) R1 - 2:46
Post Fight: Larkin takes about throwing that head kick and how no one would expect it because he is wrestler. He is excited to see if there is a spot for him in the 145 tournament in the future.
Fight Rating *** This was exciting as Larkin dominated. This was the most exciting fight on the card. It was quick, but the surprise head kick and the submission attempts gave the bout depth.
Well that is it for tonight's action. See you next week for some Bellator Heavyweight Tournament Action.
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