Michael Chandler rattled off the ring rust to score a second round submission (rear naked choke) over Rick Hawn in the Bellator 85 main event on Jan. 17, 2013, which took place at the Bren Events Center in Irvine, Calif., to retain his Lightweight championship.
The event was the first-ever for the established mixed martial arts (MMA) promotion on Spike TV. And, if the early ratings are any indication, it was a rousing success.
Bellator Featherweight Champion Pat Curran was also featured on the Spike TV-televised main card, battling Patricio Freire for five close rounds to earn a split decision win. In addition, former Strikeforce Light Heavyweight Champion Renato Sobral made his Bellator debut; however, Mikhail Zayats sent him packing in the first round of the 205-pound tournament with a devastating first round technical knockout (see it here).
There was plenty of combat sports action to capture, which MMA shutterbug sensation Esther Lin did in photo form, snapping the historic fight card from start to finish for the purpose of posterity. We've sifted through them all and shared a selection of the shots up above for your viewing pleasure, including the bone-crushing knockout that Savant Young scored, shattering the face of his opponent, Mike Guymon (more on that here).
For complete Bellator 85: "Chandler vs. Hawn" results and blow-by-blow coverage of all the night's action click here and here. Be sure to also check out Lin's complete Bellator 85 photos gallery right here.