Bellator Fighting Championships will head to "The Great Lakes State" this Friday night (Nov. 30, 2012) at the Soaring Eagle Casino and Resort in Point Pleasant, Michigan.
The main card will air live on MTV2 and Epix HD on fight night, beginning at 8 p.m. ET.
Headlining the main event of Bellator 82 will be a welterweight fight pitting former Bellator 170 pound champion Lyman Good against unbeaten Russian prospect Andrey Koreshkov in the Bellator season seven welterweight tournament finals.
Another Russian prospect, Alexander Sarnavsky, will be featured in the co-main event as he looks to bounce back from his first career loss in the lightweight tournament quarterfinals as he takes on Detroit native Tony Hervey.
Also on tap will be former WEC champion Doug Marshall taking on Kala Hose in a middleweight affair while former welterweight semifinalist David Rickels battles Jason Fischer in a catchweight fight as he works his way down to lightweight.
Our complete Bellator 82 preview and predictions are posted below:
170 lbs.: Lyman Good (14-2) vs. Andrey Koreshkov (12-0)
Lyman Good is one of Bellator's brightest homegrown talents. He was the first Bellator champion, winning three straight bouts in season one to claim the welterweight title. After losing his belt to Ben Askren, he's methodically worked his way back to another opportunity at the strap. In this season, he's battered Jimmy Wallhead on the feet and pounded away at Michail Tsarev on the ground to advance to the tournament finals.
Andrey Koreshkov has long been considered one of the best prospects in any weight class in MMA. He debuted in Bellator with two straight knockout victories and then had to gut through a tough quarterfinal against Jordan Smith in his tournament debut. If there were any questions about his skills, Koreshkov answered them with a vicious first round knockout of former Dream champion Marius Zaromskis in the semifinals.
On the feet, this fight should be close. Koreshkov has better hand speed, kicks and explosion, but Good's pure boxing technique and power should even that out. What will really be a factor in this fight is the ground. Koreshkov had difficulty dealing with Jordan Smith in the quarterfinals and if Good sticks to a similar gameplan as his last fight where he took Tsarev down and batters him, he could at least have a good shot of taking home a decision.
Final Prediction: Lyman Good via decision
155 lbs.: Alexander Sarnavskiy (20-1) vs. Tony Hervey (15-12)
Alexander Sarnavsky was one of the top-rated lightweight prospects on the planet. He entered the Bellator season seven lightweight tournament as the number one seed riding a 20 fight winning streak but was upset by scrappy veteran Rich Clementi due to Clementi's smothering and aggressive ground game. He'll be out for blood on Friday night.
Tony Hervey has a reputation for accepting fights against top competition, taking bouts against Takanori Gomi, Pat Curran and Mike Ricci throughout his 27 fight career, but he has come out on the losing end each time. His biggest strength is his power on the feet and occasional ground and pound, but this is not going to be easy.
As long as Sarnavsky can avoid getting taken down and beat up with ground and pound, this fight should be a cakewalk. He's looking to bounce back in a big way from the embarrassing Clementi loss and this one could end up on a highlight reel.
Final Prediction: Alexander Sarnavskiy via TKO in round one
185 lbs.: Kala Hose (7-5) vs. Doug Marshall (14-6)
Both Kala Hose and Doug Marshall have been reeling from some tough defeats. Hose enters the bout on a three fight losing streak after a promising start to his career. Marshall has also lose three of four, although his strength of competition is extremely more impressive, losing bouts to Giva Santana and Zelg Galesic in recent performances.
Marshall is hoping for a career resurgence and if he wants to make that happen, he'll have to avoid some of the problems which have plagued him recently which primarily include walking into heavy strikes. Hose hits like a truck and if he catches Marshall, the former WEC champion is going down. If Marshall can take Hose down, he shouldn't be too hard to submit, especially considering it's been over two years since the Hawaiian has last fought.
Final Prediction: Doug Marshall via submission in round two
160 lbs.: David Rickels (10-1) vs. Jason Fischer (4-0)
David Rickels is one of the most exciting young fighters on the Bellator roster. Despite being undersized, he submitted his first three opponents on Bellator preliminary card bouts and forced the promotion's hand. In his tournament debut, he crushed Jordan Smith in just 17 seconds, winning via first round knockout. He would controversially lose the semifinals against eventual tournament winner Karl Amoussou and despite the controversy, he decided it would be best to drop down a weight class. This 160 pound fight is the first step in that direction.
Jason Fischer earned his nickname "The Finisher" by stopping every opponent he's faced thus far in his career including a stoppage victory with one second remaining in the third round during his Bellator debut. He had less drama in his second bout with the promotion, defeating Kyle Prepolec nearly two minutes before the end of the fight.
Rickels has some serious and surprising power on the feet, although most of his career victories have come on the ground. He's best off his back, but that will be less helpful for him the further he goes in his MMA career against tougher competition. Look for Rickels to try to beat Fischer on the feet, potentially even scoring a knockout at some point.
Final Prediction: David Rickels via TKO in round two