Bellator 163: "McGeary vs. Davis" takes place TONIGHT (Fri., Nov. 4, 2016) from inside Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Conn., featuring a Light Heavyweight title fight between division champion Liam McGeary against "Mr. Wonderful" Phil Davis in the Spike TV main event.
In addition, Pride FC Heavyweight legend Sergei Kharitonov makes his promotional debut against Javy Ayala, and the main card also features a Welterweight bout with "Irish Bad Boy" Brennan Ward vs. Saad Awad. Paul "Semtex" Daley was a late scratch because of a bad weight cut.
Bellator 163 will start tonight on Spike TV at 9 p.m. ET. MMAmania.com will be here all night long to deliver LIVE results and play-by-play for the televised fights, along with the "Prelims" undercard action airing on Spike.com at 6:50 p.m. ET.
Many readers check in before, during and after the fights to share their thoughts on all of the action. Feel free to leave a comment (or 163) about the bouts before you leave and chat with all the other Maniacs during the show -- it's always a lot of fun!
BELLATOR 163 QUICK RESULTS:
Liam McGeary vs. Phil Davis -- Davis UD 50-43, 50-45, 50-44.
Saad Awad vs. Brennan Ward -- Ward KO 1:26 R1.
Neiman Gracie vs. Rudy Bears -- Gracie via sub (armbar) 4:39 R1.
Sergei Kharitonov vs. Javy Ayala -- Ayala KO 0:16 R1.
Ed Ruth vs. Dustin Collins-Miles -- Ruth TKO 3:19 R1.
Tyrell Fortune vs. Cody Miskell -- Fortune TKO 2:22 R1.
Josh Diekmann vs. Tyler King -- King via sub (RNC) 1:39 R2.
Blair Tugman vs. Walter Smith-Cotito -- Tugman UD.
Steve Skrzat vs. Tim Caron -- Caron TKO 1:22 R2.
Ilya Kotau vs. Carlos Corriea -- Correia SD 30-27, 28-29, 30-27.
Sarah Payant vs. Hannah Regina -- Regina via sub (armbar) 4:51 R1.
Thomas English vs. Christopher Foster -- Foster UD (29-28, 30-27 X2).
James Boran vs. Vinicius De Jesus -- De Jesus via sub (RNC) 1:55 R2.
BELLATOR 163 PLAY-BY-PLAY:
Liam McGeary vs. Phil Davis
Davis hails from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania and fights out of San Diego, California with the pink trunks on and a pro record of 16-3 (1 NC) as the No. 1 contender at 205 lbs. Liam McGeary hails from King's Lynn, Norfolk, England and fights out of New York City, New York as the undefeated 11-0 champion in black trunks. Our ref is John McCarthy.
Round 1: McGeary throw the first kick. Davis backs away with his hands spread out wide, dipping his shoulder and pushing out his left hand, right firmly in front of his chin. More kicks. Davis lands a kick to the left lead leg. McGeary snaps out a right kick. Davis looks for a single and then backs off. McGeary keeps pushing him toward the fence. They clinch again and Davis breaks off again. Davis puts a hard left on McGeary's chin and now it's Davis who blocks a takedown. Davis gets the takedown to full mount at 2:18. Davis is trying to crucifix the left arm. McCarthy is warning him to watch the back of the head. McGeary gets up at 3:10 and Davis tries to pull him back down. He succeeds and once again has a mount. McGeary rolls to escape and gets up swinging. Davis gets on his bike. Davis shoots at 4:32 and McGeary gets his back to the fence to block it. Davis slips on a late kick but McGeary can't pounce. 10-9 Davis.
Round 2: Davis with a kick to the lead leg early in R2. McGeary takes one that looked like it hit the cup and McCarthy gives Davis a verbal warning. McGeary with a body kick. Four kicks back and forth between the two. Davis shoots at 1:11 but can't get in on McGeary. They continue to chop at each other's legs. High kick from McGeary is blocked. Davis clinches up and gets the takedown at 1:54. McGeary tries to block the pass with his long legs and Davis is having trouble getting over the top. He finally gets it at 2:43 and tries to set something up from side control, then gets back into full mount at 3:16. Davis isn't landing a lot of huge shots but he's banking riding time on top. Davis' corner calls for short elbows. McGeary tries to spin his hips and push off the fence -- it works. Davis has to let him up at 4:30 to avoid being vulnerable to a submission. McGeary doesn't land any big shot before the bell so it's another 10-9 to Davis.
Round 3: McGeary has dug himself a hole here and if he lets Davis get on top for a third round that's an even BIGGER hole. Davis is aggressive with the leg kicks and the double leg attempt, he lifts McGeary all the way up in the air and brings him down before the one minute mark. McGeary is trying to roll for a submission but Davis puts all his weight on McGeary to flatten him out and jumps to mount at 1:22. He postures up and drops a big right elbow on his head. Every time it looks like McGeary's going to get up, Davis pushes him down and gets the full mount back. McGeary keeps trying to throw his legs up around Davis' neck but Davis isn't giving him the openings. McGeary is plastered into the mat over and over again. No matter which way he rolls, Davis cuts him off at the pass. McGeary finally gets up with ten seconds left but he's just conceded another round to Davis and if this goes the distance it's bad news for him.
Round 4: How is McGeary going to respond now that Davis has consistently put him on his back? Davis is clearly feeling cocky about how far ahead he is -- he's leaning way forward and winging right hooks. Chael Sonnen is on commentary and just said "All Davis has to beat now is the clock." With another takedown at 1:36, Davis is fulfilling that prophecy. The crowd is intermittently dissatisfied with the wrestling dominance of Davis but the boos don't last long. John McCarthy calls out a cut on McGeary opened up by a Davis elbow, and it's a nasty gash over his left eyebrow. Davis is smothering McGeary with a knee on his belly, a side control that he could easily transition back to a mount. McGeary flips to his knees looking for escapes but Davis takes that full mount back almost effortlessly. No one in Bellator has dominated McGeary like this. Davis is even looking for a kimura late in R4, but McGeary uses it to get back to his feet with seconds to go. Bank another round for "Mr. Wonderful."
Round 5: Davis is five minutes away from his first world title. It's time for desperation mode for McGeary. He needs to sell out, chase Davis down, wing punches, do whatever it takes. McGeary tries to get a kimura standing to no avail. Davis takes him down at 59 seconds as he goes for another submission. That's going to ice it. There's literally nothing McGeary can do once Davis gets the mount. I expected more attempts at jiu-jitsu off his back but Phil really is "Wonderful" at stifling all forms of offense from his opponents. A better wrestler might shake him off, and a better grappler might get his back and go for a sub. I'm not saying this fight exposes McGeary as a bad fighter, but it does show that there were holes in his game somebody of Davis' caliber was capable of exploiting. McGeary actually needs this loss to learn from the mistakes he made and become a vastly improved fighter. He'll be back in the title picture again. Davis pins him down and the seconds tick off the clock. It's time to crown a new champion.
Final result: 50-43, 50-45, 50-44 all for the new champion "Mr. Wonderful" Phil Davis.
Saad Awad vs. Brennan Ward
Awad comes in 19-8, fighting out of San Bernardino, California in the blue trunks. Ward comes in 13-4, fighting out of New London, Connecticut in the dark trunks with green trim. Our referee in charge is Kevin MacDonald.
Round 1: Awad lost his footing on a head kick attempt at the beginning but Ward doesn't take advantage. Ward gets a takedown but can't keep Awad down for more than a second. Ward lets him go and Awad covers up as Ward comes in swinging. Ward is trying to swarm at 1:16 and they start going back and forth until Awad finally stops covering up and goes shot for shot. That was a mistake -- Ward DROPS him with a left hook and it's over at 1:26.
Final result: Brennan Ward by knockout 1:26 of the first round.
Neiman Gracie vs. Rudy Bears
Red trunks for the 16-14 Bears out of Independence, Missouri. Black trunks for the 4-0 Gracie out of New York City, New York by way of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Our referee is John McCarthy.
Round 1: Gracie shuffles back and forth on his feet as Bears cautiously shadowboxes with his hands. Gracie throws a head kick and Bears steps back. 1:15 into the fight and the fans at the Mohegan Sun are a little fed up with the lack of contact between the two. Bears keeps pumping the right without landing it. Gracie shoots as we pass the two minute mark and finally tips Bears to the ground at 2:14. He quickly transitions to a back mount with hooks in. He puts the rear naked choke on, Bears keeps his chin tucked to fight it off, Gracie resets and throws heel kicks that just narrowly miss the groin. Gracie makes a slick transition to the armbar and pops Bears arm out of place as he's tapping.
Final result: Neiman Gracie wins via submission (armbar) at 4:39 of the first round.
Sergei Kharitonov vs. Javy Ayala
Blue trunks for Ayala tonight stepping into the cage, 9-5, fighting out of Porterville, California. Black trunks for Kharitonov, 23-5, fighting out of Moscow, Russia is Kharitonov. Dan Miragliotta is our referee.
Round 1: They tap gloves and Ayala shoots for a single leg immediately. Kharitonov shrugs it off but then gets DROPPED with a right hand 16 seconds into round one. THIS FIGHT IS OVER.
Final result: Javy Ayala by KNOCKOUT at 0:16 of the first round.
Ed Ruth vs. Dustin Collins-Miles
Round 1: Blue gloves, pro debut, Kazard, Kentucky for Collins-Miles. Red gloves, pro debut, Fresno, California is Ruth. Our referee is Kevin MacDonald. Ruth is considered to be the prospect here, but he got clipped by a big right hand from Collins-Miles and has to quickly resort to a takedown. He steps over to full mount and is trying hard to posture up. Collins-Miles gives up his back and Ruth fires right hands from behind as MacDonald warns him to keep it clean. Collins-Miles is bleeding and he's painting the canvas with his head. Collins-Miles tries to push off the fence with his feet to no avail. He tries to stand and Ruth takes him right down and wails on him with rights until MacDonald steps in with about 1:40 left. Ruth wins his Bellator debut.
Final result: Ed Ruth wins via technical knockout at 3:19 of the first round.
Tyrell Fortune vs. Cody Miskell
Round 1: Miskell makes his pro debut fighting out of Georgetown, Kentucky in the black trunks. Fortune makes his debut out of Portland, Oregon in the green. Our referee is John McCarthy. Fortune dances around a little on his feet trying to put his hands on Miskell. Miskell backs up after a hard combo at 39 seconds. He gets caught again at 1:05 and is reeling backward as Fortune wrestles him to the ground and tries to jack Miskell up with his free right hand. McCarthy warns him to keep his shots away from the back of the head. Miskell eats a big knee to the body and another as McCarthy warns him to fight back. After a third one it's over in under half a round.
Final result: Fortune wins via technical knockout at 2:22 of the first round.
Josh Diekmann vs. Tyler King
Round 1: King is 11-4 and fights out of Norwood, Massachusetts in the blue gloves. Diekmann is 15-7 and fights out of New London, Connecticut in the red gloves. Dan Miragliotta is our ref. These two know each other of old from a fight four years ago. King shoots for a takedown but can't get it. Diekmann talks a little smack and King throws his hands up like "And what?" The crowd gets a little impatient as the dance around each other. King lands the occasional leg kick. Diekmann lands a good counter with the right hand at 3:08. Some good punches on both parts at 4:00 until Diekmann backs up and puts his hands on his hips which draws some boos. King shoots and gets a takedown with 40 seconds left. In a close round that's enough to give King a 10-9.
Round 2: King starts chopping away with leg kicks immediately as R2 gets underway. Diekmann is trying to come over the top with his hands on the taller King. King gets a takedown at 1:02 and has a full mount 18 seconds later. Diekmann gives up his back as the hammers pour down. King gets the RNC and it's all over.
Final result: Tyler King wins via submission (rear naked choke) at 1:39 of round two.
Blair Tugman vs. Walter Smith-Cotito
Round 1: Unaired before Spike TV.
Final result: Blair Tugman wins this contest via unanimous decision.
Steve Skrzat vs. Tim Caron
Round 1: Skrzat is 8-8 in the blue gloves and fights out of Providence, Rhode Island. Caron is 5-0 in the red gloves and fights out of Manchester, New Hampshire. Our referee is Todd Anderson. They tap to open the fight and we're underway. Caron is pushing Skrzat toward the outside early and tries a head kick. He lands a hard knee to the body and both men tie up. Caron gets a takedown and is on top in half guard. Skrzat is able to get up at 2:05. They break apart at 2:20. Caron throws another kick upward and a few leg kicks. Skrzat lands a left to the head. Skrzat shoots and Caron defends with his back on the fence. Caron widens his stance, turns Skrzat around and lands a couple of knees to the head. Skrzat tries to score with some body shots late. 10-9 Caron.
Round 2: Caron is hunting again and using his kicks to try and open things up. Anderson calls time to remove something from Skrzat's arm. Caron hurts him after the restart at 1:09 and jumps on his back on the ground to pound it out/ Anderson waves it off shortly thereafter due to unanswered lefts and rights.
Final result: Tim Caron wins via technical knockout at 1:22 of the second round.
Ilya Kotau vs. Carlos Corriea
Round 1: Correia is 1-0 and fights out of Naugatuck, Connecticut in the red trunks. Kotau is 1-1 out of Danbury, Connecticut in the blue trunks. Our referee is Dan Miragliotta. This fight quickly ends up on the fence twice with each man jockeying for position as Correia looks for takedowns. He finally gets it at 1:20 and jumps to the back when Kotau stands up. Kotau carries his weight for a little while but starts to fall when Correia hammers him in the head, then goes for a rear naked choke, but Kotau slips out and is on top in guard. Correia tries to set up a triangle and misses, then goes for an omoplata, Kotau tries to do a headstand to get out, eventually Correia just lets go and jumps on his back again. He's shaken off and they square up with 70 seconds left in R1. Kotau starts winging in punches and a few land hard. Correia briefly has a takedown but Kotau stands, gets behind him, picks him up and throws him down. Kotau really evened the round up late but I'd still give Correia a 10-9.
Round 2: They tap gloves and then Kotau decks him with a right - that was only 5-6 seconds into the round. Correia goes for a triangle off his back and then locks on an armbar. If Kotau can get out Correia may still be rocked. Correia just won't give up though. Kotau finally pulls free at 1:40 and Correia goes for a heel hook. He can't get it. Kotau stands up at 2:25 and Correia tries to get a single leg. He finally completes it at 3:21 but Kotau is back up 10 seconds later. Kotau is able to shake him off and striking standing again with a minute left. Correia dives for a single leg to keep from getting clipped. R2 ends with Kotau spinning to his back with hooks in. 10-9 Kotau.
Round 3: One more glove tap and Kotau is head hunting right away, then has to block a single leg attempt by Correia in response. They spin a couple of times on the fence. Correia is digging deep for a double that's going nowhere as Miragliotta warns both men to get busy. Correia nearly gives up a mount trying to get the takedown but then sweeps and sits back for a foot lock. He can't get it and Kotau takes the back with one hook in. Correia manages to shake him off and slide to side control with under two minutes left. Kotau almost gets up but Correia jumps to take his back with both hooks sunk in. Correia is going for the RNC but can't get it. Kotau tries to spin out but Correia gets a full mount and the back again as Kotau tries to get away. 10-9 for Correia with Kotau almost but not quite sweeping at the bell.
Final result: The judges score this contest 30-27 Correia, 29-28 Kotau, 30-27 Correia by split decision.
Sarah Payant vs. Hannah Regina
Round 1: Regina makes her pro debut out of Nashua, New Hampshire in the black trunks. Payant is 1-3 and she fights out of Springville, Massachusetts in the blue trunks. Todd Anderson is our referee. Regina is aggressive fast and nearly has a full mount 45 seconds in but instead pulls guard to go for a d'arce choke. She can't get it but winds up on top. Payant wants a single leg and can't get it. They jockey for position on the fence as Regina throws knees. Regina gets a takedown at 2:46. Payant eats a few hammers but gets back up at 3:21 and is taken down again eating some more hard rights. Regina is warned to watch the back of the head as her assault continues. Payant tries to grab a leg for a sweep to no avail. Payant gets a takedown with 30 seconds left but Regina uses it to transition for an armbar and gets the tapout with less than 15 seconds left. She's so happy she's screaming.
Final result: Hannah Regina via submission (armbar) at 4:51 of the first round.
Thomas English vs. Christopher Foster
Round 1: Unaired before Spike TV.
Final result: Foster wins via unanimous decision on scores of 29-28 and 30-27 X2.
James Boran vs. Vinicius De Jesus
Round 1: Unaired before Spike TV.
Final result: De Jesus wins via submission (rear naked choke) at 1:55 of the second round.