Bellator 222 Results & Live Coverage: Two Title Fights and More!

MMA

Welcome to Fightful.com's live coverage & discussion for tonight's Bellator 222.

We'll be bringing you full, fight by fight coverage of every bout on the card and you can watch along with us, sending in your feedback on our Disqus boards below!

SALCEDO: Bellator: Will Two Division Champ Pitbull Further His Legacy, Or Be Defeated By Undefeated AJ McKee?

Fight Card

Prelims (DAZN - 7:30 pm ET)

Marcus Surin defeated Nekruz Mirkhojaev via Split Decision (30-27, 27-29, 29-27)

Phil Hawes defeated Michael Wilcox via 1st Round TKO (Doctor Stoppage - 5:00)

Robson Gracie Jr. defeated Oscar Vera via 1st Round Submission (Armbar - 3:15)

Mike Kimbel defeated Sebastian Ruiz via Split Decision (28-29, 30-27 x2)

Haim Gozali defeated Gustavo Wurlitzer via 1st Round Submission (Triangle Choke - 4:02)

Lindsey VanZandt defeated Rena Kubota via Technical Submission (Rear-Naked Choke - 4:04)

Valerie Loureda defeated Larkyn Dasch via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 30-27 x2)

Adam Borics defeated Aaron Pico via 2nd Round KO (Flying Knee - 3:55)

Taylor Turner defeated Heather Hardy via 1st Round TKO (3:53)

John Beneduce defeated Kenny Rivera via Unanimous Decision (30-26, 30-27 x2)

Kastriot Xhema defeated Whitney Francois via 2nd Round TKO (3:17)

Brandon Polcare defeated Brandon Medina via 1st Round Submission (Guillotine Choke - 4:33)

Main Card (DAZN - 10 pm ET)

Bellator MMA Bantamweight Championship
Kyoji Horiguchi defeated Darrion Caldwell via Unanimous Decision (48-47, 49-46 x2) to become the new Bantamweight Champion

Juan Archuleta defeated Eduard Dantas via 2nd Round KO (Right Hand - 4:59)

Patrick Mix defeated Ricky Bandejas via 1st Round Submission (Rear-Naked Choke - 1:06)

Dillon Danis defeating Max Humphrey via 1st Round Submission (Armbar - 4:28)

Lyoto Machida defeated Chael Sonnen via 2nd Round TKO (0:22)

Bellator Welterweight Championship
Bellator Welterweight World Grand Prix Semi-Finals

Rory MacDonald defeated Neiman Gracie via Unanimous Decision (49-46, 48-47 x2) to retain his Welterweight Title and advance to the Grand Prix Final


Live Coverage

Prelims

Aaron Pico (4-2) vs. Adam Borics (8-0)

Round One

An uppercut lands for Pico early, then shooting a takedown and grappling Borics to the mat. After struggling for position, Pico then elevated his foe, slamming him to the mat in center cage. Borics refused to be controlled though, standing back up and landing a beautiful low kick. Pico returned to the wrestling regardless, taking Borics back down and looking for some ground and pound as Borics once again stood back up. Pico ends the round as an aggressor on the feet but his wrestling put him one up. 

Round Two

A punch lands for Borics right away but he's taken down for his troubles. He again escaped though, throwing a knee on the inside but being driven to the mat once more. Pico was unable to maximize his takedown, with Borics using the fence to stand upright. Borics then exploded too, timing a jumping knee and rocking Pico badly. Ground and pound followed and this one was over!

Winner: Adam Borics via 2nd Round KO (Flying Knee - 3:55)

Heather Hardy (2-1) vs. Taylor Turner (4-5)

Round One

Turner is using kicks early, then clinching as Hardy pushed forward. She soon scored a takedown too, landing in side control before advancing to mount. Ground and pound followed, with Turner then taking her foe's back as Hardy turned. She couldn't complete the choke though, throwing more punches until after a barrage of ground and pound from mount, the referee stopped proceedings.

Winner: Taylor Turner via 1st Round TKO (3:53)

Main Card

Bellator MMA Bantamweight Championship
Darrion Caldwell (13-2) (c) vs. Kyoji Horiguchi (27-2)

Round One

It's a feeling out process here early until Caldwell explodes, launching some high kicks and scoring a takedown. Caldwell then trapped his Horiguchi's arm, unleashing some sharp elbows until Horiguchi somewhat steadied the ship. A massive left hand soon landed regardless but Caldwell illegally grabbed his foe's glove and the fight was stood back up as a result. Horiguchi mounted very sporadic attacks on the feet but Caldwell takes this round with his wrestling.

Round Two

Struggling to get inside, Horiguchi is slightly out of range early but continues to push forward until Caldwell timed a takedown. He was once again unable to maximize it though, with Horiguchi using the cage to stay off his back. The stall in action forced a stand-up but Horiguchi was still unable to make much impact as Caldwell continued to use fleeting kicks. Caldwell controlled much of this round but Horiguchi did more damage which admittedly wasn't drastic in itself. 

Round Three

An early scramble left Horiguchi in control, working for a choke until Caldwell dropped to his back. Now in Caldwell's guard, Horiguchi was on top at last, attempting to advance position until things returned to the feet. Caldwell winged a shot in response but wound up on his back again, with Horiguchi now dominating the 3rd round. Some ground and pound soon followed but Caldwell fought upright, with a wild strike exchange commencing as Caldwell timed a takedown and returned to top position. Horiguchi scrambled to the fence though, with one final exchange closing the round.

Round Four

After missing a high kick, Caldwell slipped to the mat, falling into a guillotine but eventually escaping. That returned things to their prior position, with Caldwell holding his foe against the fence without scoring much offense of his own.That prolonged stall forced the referee to restart things, with Horiguchi keeping the fight standing and landing some strikes before scoring a takedown of his own in the round's closing moments.

Round Five  

After landing a left hand, Horiguchi overextended, allowing Caldwell to score a takedown that returned things to that same position. Horiguchi's back was against the fence once more, throwing punches while Caldwell simply looked to retain position. The Rizin champion began to attack a guillotine as well but couldn't make anything of it, with things remaining stalled until Horiguchi briefly stood up only to be taken down again. Horiguchi escaped though, throwing more strikes as things returned to the cage yet again.

Winner: Kyoji Horiguchi via Unanimous Decision (48-47, 49-46 x2)

Eduard Dantas (21-6) vs. Juan Archuleta (22-1)

Round One

Dantas takes center cage early, walking forward as Archuleta looked for angles. Both men then landed solid right hands as Dantas soon exploded, launching a spinning back first but being taken down in response. Archuleta was unable to ground his foe though, settling for clinch control against the fence. Dantas then broke free regardless, with more strike exchanges commencing in the round's final minute.

Round Two 

The clash of styles continues to be prevalent on the feet, with Archuleta looking for explosive offense before regaining the clinch after cutting his foe. Things soon reset once again though, with Dantas still pushing forward but eventually walking into a heavy right hand that wobbled him badly. Archuleta briefly looked to seize but Dantas steadied the ship, getting his legs back under him and walking forward yet again. That only earned him an uppercut to the jaw though and then in the round's final seconds, Dantas was flattened by a sudden right hand. This one is over!

Winner: Juan Archuleta via 2nd Round KO (Right Hand - 4:59)

Ricky Bandejas (11-2) vs. Patrick Mix (10-0)

Round One

Mix immediately pushed forward, backing his foe up and then attempting a takedown. As it was defended, Mix immediately jumped on Bandejas' back instead, applying the standing Rear-Naked Choke and scoring a spectacular submission win. 

Winner: Patrick Mix via 1st Round Submission (Rear-Naked Choke - 1:06)

Dillon Danis (1-0) vs. Max Humphrey (3-2)

Round One

Humphrey avoids the early takedown attempt, firing some strikes at range but then being taken down after all. Danis immediately went to work from top position, throwing strikes and taking his foe's back. After launching ground and pound from behind his foe, Danis began to attack the choke but Humphrey defended himself well, avoiding the choke but eventually succumbing to an armbar instead. 

Winner: Dillon Danis via 1st Round Submission (Armbar - 4:28)

Chael Sonnen (30-16-1) vs. Lyoto Machida (25-8)

Round One

Sonnen immediately backs Machida up, attempting a takedown to no avail but landing a clinch knee instead. Back at range, Machida landed some kicks, making Sonnen pay on the way in but then standing in the clinch too long and being tripped for his troubles. 'The Dragon' avoided having his back taken though, standing upright and eventually returning to range. The body kicks immediately found a home from there, with Machida then landing a leaping knee that floored his foe. Machida swarmed, unleashing ground and pound as Sonnen barely regained some control.

As he looked to stand up though, Sonnen exposed himself to more ground and pound, courageously fighting upright and holding the clinch to the buzzer.

Round Two

In response to the first takedown attempt, Machida timed a beautiful knee, dropping his foe and this time closing the show, pouring on ground and pound and forcing the stoppage.

Winner: Lyoto Machida via 2nd Round TKO (0:22)

Post-fight, Chael Sonnen announced his retirement, bidding farewell and saying thank you for the memories. 

Bellator Welterweight Championship
Bellator Welterweight World Grand Prix Semi-Finals
Rory MacDonald (20-5-1) (c) vs. Neiman Gracie (9-0)

Round One

Both men quickly met in center cage, with Gracie winging a right hand but landing a low kick instead. MacDonald then scored his first offense, throwing a neat combination and sprawling a takedown. The champion avoided his foe's clinch too, using his jab effectively but then slipping on a high kick only to leap back to his feet. MacDonald then walked Gracie into a neat uppercut but ate a left hook himself, still probing with the jab. He then caught Gracie's kick too, walking his foe back and launching a right hand that was blocked. Gracie's low kick soon found a home regardless, competetive round in the opener.

Round Two

Gracie's low kick landed again in round two, then pushing forward and scoring a takedown as well. MacDonald attacked a leg off his back but that allowed Gracie to seize, thinking kneebar until MacDonald eventually escaped. Back on the feet, Gracie attempted more takedowns before MacDonald reversed, winding up in Neiman's guard. An elbow soon followed but Gracie briefly used rubber guard to regain control. MacDonald created space before long though, throwing some ground and pound and staying on top until the buzzer.

Round Three

A sharp right hand found a home for MacDonald early and then another one too, with the champion now finding his range. A push kick to the body came next, with Rory then sprawling Gracie's takedown and scoring one of his own. MacDonald landed in side control, being aggressive right away and launching ground and pound after losing position. Gracie regained guard in the meantime, then attacking with a sweep and almost securing an armbar until MacDonald smartly pulled free. Rory completes the round in Gracie's guard.

Round Four

A body kick lands for Gracie early, pushing MacDonald back but walking into a right hand along the way. Gracie continues to edge forward regardless, trading strikes with MacDonald and then attempting a takedown. A wild scramble followed, with Gracie twice jumping on Rory's back only to slide off both times. That allowed MacDonald to secure top position, smartly working away and avoiding danger within Gracie's guard. He landed solid ground and pound in the meantime too, controlling the action impressively. 

Round Five

Gracie again comes out the aggressor, pushing his foe back to the fence and eventually scoring a takedown. He landed in half guard but then moved to mount, holding position until after an immense struggle, MacDonald regained half guard. With 90 seconds remaining, Gracie was again unable to advance, with Rory securing butterfly guard instead. The champion seemingly had things under control until in the closing moments, Gracie briefly attacked a heel hook to no avail.

Winner, STILL Champion and Advancing to the Grand Prix Final: Rory MacDonald via Unanimous Decision (49-46, 48-47 x2)

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