The second half of Bellator’s double header takes place tonight and there are a total of four big fights worth checking out. The event will be headlined by a bantamweight division rematch as Darrion Caldwell faces Joe Taimanglo. Also, Justin Lawrence faces John Teixeira and Ilima MacFarlane looks to remain undefeated as a pro fighter.
Bellator MMA Bantamweight Division Fight
Darrion “The Wolf” Caldwell (9-1-0) vs. Joe “The Juggernaut” Taimanglo (23-6-1)
Caldwell will be looking to rebound from his first professional MMA defeat, which came to Joe Taimanglo at Bellator 159. Taimanglo will enter the fight riding a four fight winning streak, defeating Caldwell, Sirwan Kakai, Antonio Duarte and Michael Parker. Caldwell also holds a win over former Bellator MMA Featherweight Champion and former Bellator MMA Bantamweight Campion Joe Warren, that win came at Bellator 151. Taimanglo competed in the final Bellator MMA Featherweight Tournament, losing to Justin Wilcox in the semi-finals.
Prediction: Caldwell dominated Taimanglo before getting caught in the third round, Caldwell dominates again with his wrestling and he improves on his past mistake to get a decision win.
Bellator MMA Featherweight Division Fight
Justin “The American Kid” Lawrence (9-3-0) vs. John “Macapa” Teixeira (20-1-2)
Lawrence has won two of three fights under the Bellator MMA banner, defeating Sean Wilson and Isao Kobayashi, while suffering a defeat to Emmanuel Sanchez. Teixeira is currently undefeated in Bellator MMA competition, defeating Scott Cleve, Fabricio Da Silva and Gleristone Santos. Lawrence won just one of three fights during his time in the UFC, that lone win came over John Cofer at the UFC Ultimate Fighter 15 Finale. Teixeira also competed once before in the UFC, suffering a decision defeat to Hugo Viana at UFC 147.
Prediction: Lawrence is one of the best kickboxers in Bellator MMA, but his ground game is suspect at best and Teixeira submits him in the second round.
Bellator MMA Women’s Flyweight Division Fight
Emily “Gordinha” Ducote (4-1-0) vs. Ilima “The Ilimanator” MacFarlane (4-0-0)
Ducote is currently undefeated under the Bellator MMA banner, defeating both Bruna Vargas and Kenya Da Silva. MacFarlane has already fought three times in Bellator MMA competition, most notably defeating Rebecca Ruth at Bellator MMA Dynamite 2. Ducote is also a former Xtreme Fight Night Women’s Flyweight Champion, she vacated the belt upon signing with Bellator MMA. MacFarlane is best known for the soccer mom fight at the Xplode Fight Series, where she defeated Katie Castro in 10 seconds.
Prediction: MacFarlane is a fighter who will just keep coming forward no matter what is thrown her way, but Ducote has a great ground game and she grinds out a decision victory.
Bellator MMA Welterweight Division Fight
Andre Fialho (7-0-0) vs. Chidi “Chidi Bang Bang” Njokuani (15-4-0-1NC)
Fialho has already earned two wins under the Bellator MMA banner, defeating both Rick Reger and Manuel Maraz respectively. Njokuani is currently undefeated in Bellator MMA as well, defeating Ricky Rainey and Thiago Jambo Goncalves. Fialho as only seen one of his seven pro fights go past the opening round, that fight was a win over Wanderson Silva at Cage Fighters 4. Njokuani has already won two belts as a pro, as he is a former Resurrection Fighting Alliance Welterweight Champion and a former Tachi Palace Fights Welterweight Champion.
Prediction: These fighters are both excellent strikers, but Njokuani is better at controlling range and he picks apart Fialho to earn a decision win.
Preliminary Card Quick Picks
Jarod Trice over Tommie Britton
Jonathan Gary over Aaron Robertson
Codale Ford over Justin Patterson
Fernando Gonzalez over Chris Hicks
Joey Soto over Bronson St. Romaine