Bellator 240/Dublin: “Primus vs. Bungard” comes to 3Arena in Dublin, Ireland, TONIGHT (Sat., Feb. 22, 2020). The main event will see a former Lightweight world champion resume his quest toward top dog status in the division, even though the fight is at 160 lbs. due to his opponent missing weight.
Let’s break it down:
160 lbs.: Brent Primus (9-1) vs. Chris Bungard (15-5)
Brent Primus is facing locally favored Chris Bungard from Bellshill, North Lanarkshire, Scotland in the featured fight. A renowned BJJ trainer and practicioner like Primus will undoubtedly be happy to take a punch to the face or a knee to the body just to double leg Bungard to the ground and make him suffer there. In addition to that Bungard’s miserable performance on the scale before the fight suggests he’s not motivated to face Primus despite being given such a big spotlight. He will fail and he will fail hard.
Final prediction: Brent Primus via first round arm bar
160 lbs.: Kiefer Crosbie (7-1) vs. Imaik Furtado (6-1)
You can’t have a card in Dublin without Charlie Ward and Kiefer Crosbie on it, and lo and behold they’re both here. If Conor McGregor and John Kavanaugh aren’t cageside they’ll be in the crowd having a beer, but I suspect one or both will be cornering Crosbie here. Crosbie packs a lot of muscle into a very small frame so if Furtado drags him to the deep waters he could gas him out for the upset, but so far the only way Kiefer Crosbie loses is due to his own stupidity.
Final prediction: Kiefer Crosbie via first round knockout
145 lbs.: Ricky Bandejas (12-3) vs. Frans Mlambo (8-4)
After getting back in the win column with a quick finish at Bellator 225, Ricky Bandejas looks to establish his presence in a new weight class by fighting Frans Mlambo at Featherweight. Frans Mlambo will be a tough challenge for him. He brings three straight wins including his two Bellator fights to date. With four knockouts and three submissions under his belt, the SBG Ireland fighter brings a diverse arsenal and like Bandejas is going up to 145, giving him an easier cut and a friendly hometown crowd for this bout. He’s also a naturally bigger fighter at 5’9” versus 5’7” for Bandejas. This one is a coin flip to me. Bandejas is a better technical striker, but the size advantage and friendly confines for Mlambo will motivate him to put on a great performance.
Final prediction: Frans Mlambo via split decision
170 lbs.: Oliver Enkamp (8-2) vs. Lewis Long (17-5)
I favor Enkamp as the up-and-coming fighter who doesn’t have as many wins OR losses as Long. I think he’ll be able to outlast and out-cardio his more experienced opponent.
Final prediction: Oliver Enkamp via unanimous decision
125 lbs.: Bec Rawlings (7-9) vs. Elina Kallionidou (7-3)
Everything I love about Bec Rawlings is every reason she’s going to lose this fight. She’d kick your ass (yes you reading this) in any bar or street fight, but this is neither of those. As good ol’ J.R. would say she’s “tougher than a two dollar steak” but in the end that means she can be hit a LOT of times and not get finished — 67% of her losses (six of nine) are by decision. Kallionidou is usually the fighter they feed to bigger names to get a win but at only 21 she doesn’t have the years and the miles on her body that “Rowdy” Rawlings does.
Final prediction: Elina Kallionidou via unanimous decision
145 lbs.: Leah McCourt (3-1) vs. Judith Ruis (6-4)
Leah McCourt has already been pegged as a future superstar. She’s got attractive features both inside and outside the cage, but it’s her fighting prowess we’re most interested in here, and three straight wins have cemented her status after a rough debut in 2017. Both of her Bellator fights to date have been finished — the first a doctor’s stoppage TKO in round one and the second a rear naked choke in round two. It’s too young in her career to reasonably expect her to face Cris Cyborg, but they will try to fast track her anyway.
Judith Ruis could easily derail that hype train. Although she’s only two wins over .500 she’s had six more fights than McCourt in a sport where experience matters a great deal. Thankfully for her McCourt is the taller and lankier fighter (5’8” vs. 5’5”) so she’ll have a commanding height and reach advantage, and Ruis’ track record is generally to trade a win for a loss and never go on a commanding run anywhere she’s been. If that suggests to you she was picked precisely to make Leah McCourt look good you wouldn’t be wrong.
Final prediction: Leah McCourt via rear-naked choke in round two
170 lbs.: Aaron Chalmers (5-1) vs. Austin Clem (3-0)
Clearly the name recognition alone Aaron Chalmers has from Geordie Shore keeps him in a prominent position on Bellator’s UK cards despite having lost to Corey Browning at Lightweight. His bouts before and after that were catchweight affairs of 160 and up so wisely they are putting him at Welterweight for this affair. They may want him to roll on Clem, but he’s undefeated on the minor league circuit in the United States, and none of his pro fights have been out of the second round. If Chalmers is serious about his pro MMA career, now is the time to show it by coming in fully prepared and in tip-top condition. If he goes back to his Geordie Shore ways, Austin Clem will be the new Corey Browning.
Final prediction: Aaron Chalmers via third round technical knockout
185 lbs.: Charlie Ward (7-4) vs. Kyle Kurtz (9-5)
Ward’s won five of seven (71 percent) of his fights by knockout including all of his wins in Bellator MMA to date. He’s a SBG Ireland fighter who puts brawling ahead of finesse which doesn’t always result in a win but should favor him against a fighter who has lost 50 percent of his last eight fights. Kurtz is above average at submissions, scoring seven of nine (77 percent) of his wins that way, but he’s got to last long enough in a phone booth to even have that chance.
Final prediction: Charlie Ward via second round knockout
That’s a wrap!
MMAmania.com will cover the card airing on Channel 5 (UK) at 5 p.m. ET and Bellator 240 at 10 p.m. ET tape delay on Paramount Network. To check out the latest Bellator MMA-related news and notes be sure to hit up our comprehensive news archive right here.