Bellator 47, which aired from Casino Rama in Rama, Ontario last night (July 23, 2011) is officially in the books. The special Bellator summer series featherweight tournament held its semifinals featuring some of the best featherweight prospects in the world.
The main event of the evening was a very intriguing match-up between two of the best 145 pounders in Bellator as recent lightweight title challenger Pat Curran took on standout British grappler/striker Ronnie Mann.
Pat Curran is a very large featherweight and his constant forward movement mixed with occasional lightning-quick aggression completely flustered Mann.
The Brit could not find his range and had serious issues all three rounds connecting with his punches as Curran landed the more effective strikes over the coarse of three rounds, giving the Shawn Tompkins-trained fighter a large shiner underneath his eye.
Mann threatened with submission at the end of the second and third rounds but it simply wasn't enough as the judges awarded Curran a unanimous decision.
Find out who he'll face in the tournament finals after the jump.
The other half of the semifinals was a thrilling affair between South Americans Marlon Sandro and Nazareno Malegarie. Sandro was known as the superior striker and he proved it, repeatedly landing counters and hard left jabs that opened up some big cuts underneath each of the Argentinians eyes.
Malegarie tried valiantly to get the fight to the ground but it was in vain as Sandro fended him off easily and in fact, was able to score about four takedowns himself although they were mainly used to score points. Despite everything going wrong, the tough Argentinian never gave up and continued to push forward, courageously diving into Sandro's counters just so he could land his slightly less effective hooks.
When it was all said and done, all three judges sided in favor of the former Sengoku featherweight champion Marlon Sandro. The Brazilian will now square off against Pat Curran an opportunity at the 145 pound title next month in Connecticut.
Former IFL and WEC lightweight Chris Horodecki showcased his all-around skills in front of his hometown crowd and dominated an overmatched Chris Saunders over the coarse of three rounds with a mixture of clinching, takedowns, ground and pound and top control.
Horodecki showed no concern for Saunders' ground game as he repeatedly took the Californian down and looked to pass his guard while throwing punches to the body. "The Polish Hammer" easily fended off Saunders' submission attempts and rode out a unanimous decision victory to the delight of the Canadian crowd.
In the opening bout of the evening heavyweights Neil Grove and Zak Jensen absolutely threw down in one of the wildest, sloppiest, least technical heavyweight fights you'll ever see. Both men threw bombs from the opening bell and it was Jensen who connected with the most damaging blows. Instead of going for a ground and pound finish, he attempted a submission and gave Grove the opening to come back and hurt him.
Both men traded heavy strikes on the ground, holding each other in place before Grove dove forward and finished Jensen off with a series of heavy strikes that forced The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) season 10 alumni to turn away and surrender.
The 40 year old Grove likely punched his ticket to Bellator's season five heavyweight tournament. He was a finalist in the inaugural tournament and he called out Bellator heavyweight champion Cole Konrad in his post-fight speech.
For complete Bellator 47 results and detailed round-by-round commentary of all the televised fights click here.
Who impressed you the most tonight Maniacs?
Will it be Sandro or Curran who comes away with the featherweight summer series tournament title?