Bellator 215: “Mitrione vs. Kharitonov” aired last night (Fri., Feb. 15, 2019) via Paramount Network from Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut. Heavyweight hard hitters took the spotlight for the main event as Matt Mitrione (13-6) faced Russian PRIDE fighting legend Sergei Kharitonov (29-7, 1 NC).
Unfortunately there’s not much to say about this fight. Mitrione threw a left leg kick that went straight up into Kharitonov’s groin, he slumped to the ground moaning in agony, and Leon Roberts gave Kharitonov the allotted five minutes to recover. When Kharitonov told both the doctor and the referee he couldn’t continue, the fight became a no contest at 15 seconds.
The highlights can be seen above courtesy of Bellator.
Mitrione apologized profusely afterward.
“It looked like he was throwing a body jab and stepped in. It was well placed but it just caught him in the nuts. All the fans, I’m so sorry. I was ready to put on a show, so was Sergei. Let’s go drink some beers.”
Rising Welterweights also enjoyed the spotlight in Uncasville as the undefeated Logan Storley (9-0) took on Ion Pascu (18-9), the latter in search of his first Bellator win.
Pascu tried but ultimately failed to stop a takedown from “Storm” Storley, who postured up from half guard to smash heavy right elbows into his face. It couldn’t be said that Storley broke Pascu in the first round, but there was little question as to who won the frame. The second round was “virtually identical” other than that it only took Storley 18 seconds to get the takedown this time. Here’s a look at the big takedown he got in the first frame.
Pascu went for a kimura a couple of times in the third round, but none of the attempts stopped Storley’s momentum, they just slowed him down a little. He ultimately spent the remainder of the round on top in half guard grinding away, just as he had in the previous two frames, earning a 30-27 and 30-26 X2 from the judges. John McCarthy interviewed “Storm” afterward.
“People don’t remember, he fought Ed Ruth to a close fight, and he fought Larkin here just a few months ago. To all the people booing that’s Division I wrestling at its finest. It’s just taking it out of him little by little, position by position, scramble by scramble. To the 170 pounders, I’m here for real now.”
Former Bantamweight champion Eduardo Dantas (20-6) looked to rebound from a two fight skid against late notice opponent Toby Misech (12-6).
Dantas owned the first round on the ground. Misech panicked and tried to backpedal out of a clinch, but after a stalemate against the fence, Dantas took him down and nearly locked on a kimura. Dantas actually chose to let it go so he could throw left hands at Misech’s head instead, securing a 10-9 round in his favor.
Second verse, same as the first. Even without getting the takedown Dantas was able to climb up onto Misech’s back and get one hook in. Misech spent the rest of the round on defense blocking a possible rear naked choke, easily giving Dantas another 10-9. After a third round without a single takedown the judges scored it 29-28 and 30-27 X2 for Dantas.
@DuduDantasMMA is your winner via decision tonight, as we head to our co-main and main events at #Bellator215.— Bellator MMA (@BellatorMMA) February 16, 2019
Watch the next two bouts LIVE on @ParamountNet and simulcast on @DAZN_USA. pic.twitter.com/xUUJIeNpHM
To the surprise of none, no post-fight interview followed.
Highlight reel sensation Michael Kimbel (2-0) returned to action for a Bantamweight fight with Jonathan Douma (3-1).
Kimbel’s pro fights to date had never been out of the first round, and looking at the tale of the tape before the bout began he appeared to have all of the advantages.
Advantages turn to disadvantages quickly when you try to posture up for some striking on the ground and leave your head exposed for an opponent to wrap his legs around it. Kimbel tried to power bomb his way out of danger but that only made the triangle choke tighter, which forced him to tap at 2:51 of Round 1.
The victorious Jonathan Douma spoke to John McCarthy afterward.
“I knew he wanted to strike with me. I let him do my job for me — he took me down, you see what happened. (The slam) hurt but I train this every day. Training at Triforce you’re a different man. You do stuff like this. Thank you John, it’s an honor.”
Rounding out the main card at Welterweight was a fight between “Mr. VanZant” Austin Vanderford (6-0) and Cody Jones (6-2).
Here is your tale of the tape for our first bout on the #Bellator215 main card between @AustinV170MMA & Cody Jones as they both make their Bellator debut.— Bellator MMA (@BellatorMMA) February 16, 2019
Our main card is LIVE now on @ParamountNet and simulcast on @DAZN_USA. pic.twitter.com/S7PrY0csfa
Even though Jones was reputedly a stud in the ground game, the Gracie Barre experience Vanderford had fighting out of Portland, Oregon was the better of the two men. With under a minute left he took the back and when Jones tried to roll over on top he transitioned to an arm triangle and squeezed tight until Jones was forced to tap with just 11 seconds left in Round 1.
Vanderford spoke to “Big” John McCarthy after Michael C. Williams made it official.
“He was tough off of the bottom. He plays butterfly guard and all that but I just stuck to it and got the job done. My mouthpiece went flying — I like that though. I knew we were close on time but I could kind of hear him gargling a little bit. His mouth guard dropped out too and I thought he was asleep.”
For complete Bellator 215 results and coverage click here.