A pair of new champions were crowned at Bellator 288.
In the event's main event, Vadim Nemkov defeated Corey Anderson to retain his Bellator Light Heavyweight Championship. The pair first fought at Bellator 277, this past April and after Anderson thoroughly dominated the champion for the majority of the fight's first three rounds, the bout was called off with just five-seconds remaining in the third round following a clash of heads, which caused a massive gash on the champion's forehead.
Fortunately for Nemkov, he wouldn't need the referee to step-in this time as he outworked, outpaced, and outclassed Corey Anderson en route to a unanimous decision victory to retain his title and extend his winning streak to what will now be a full six-years, with his last loss coming all the way back in 2016.
The co-main event of the evening saw UFC Hall of Famer, Khabib Nurmagomedov's cousin, Usman Nurmagomedov outclass now-former champion, Patricky Pitbull via unanimous decision to become the new Bellator Lightweight Champion.
Prior to tonight's broadcast, Mauro Ranallo, John McCarthy, and Josh Thomson would offer up a touching tribute to the late Anthony 'Rumble' Johnson, who unfortunately passed away, earlier this week.
Check-out the emotional tribute below:
Full results and highlights for Bellator 288 can be found below:
Main Card (Showtime, 9:00 p.m. EDT/6:00 p.m. PDT)
- Vadim Nemkov (C) def. (#1) Corey Anderson via unanimous decision (49-46, 49-46, 48-47) — Bellator Light Heavyweight Championship
- (#1) Usman Nurmagomedov def. Patricky Pitbull (C) via unanimous decision (50-45, 50-45, 50-44) — Bellator Lightweight Championship
- Timur Khizriev def. (#7) Daniel Weichel via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)
- Daniel James def. (#5) Tyrell Fortune via TKO (elbows) (0:27, R2)
- Levan Chokheli def. (#10) Roman Faraldo via unanimous decision (29-27, 29-27, 29-27)
Prelims (YouTube, 6:00 p.m. EDT/3:00 p.m. PDT)
- Imamshafi Aliev def. Sean Connor Fallon via TKO (doctor stoppage) (3:20, R1)
- Kiliys Mota def. Jairo Pacheco via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
- Archie Colgan def. Jesse Hannam via TKO (punches) (0:50, R1)
- Sullivan Cauley def. Jay Radick via KO (punch) (1:01, R1)
- Jordan Newman def. Jayden Taulker via submission (rear-naked choke) (3:20, R2)
- Laird Anderson def. Rob Fenicle via TKO (strikes) (2:28, R2)
- Isaiah Hokit def. Matias Naders via TKO (punches) (3:48, R2)
- Wladmir Gouvea def. Kory Moegenburg via TKO (strikes) (1:46, R2)
HISTORY IS MADE --@Usmannmgdv puts on a dominant performance against Pitbull to become the new @BellatorMMA lightweight champion --#Bellator288 main event is NEXT on @Showtime. pic.twitter.com/nJM9u6BWOm— SHOWTIME SPORTS (@SHOsports) November 19, 2022