Bellator 261: “Johnson vs Moldavsky” is set to air TONIGHT (Fri., June 25, 2021) from Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Conn., broadcasting via Showtime. Headlining the event will be an interim Heavyweight title fight between Timothy Johnson (No. 1) taking on Valentin Moldavsky (No. 3). In the co-main event, Liz Carmouche will face Kana Watanabe in women’s Flyweight action.
Bellator 261’s main card will air on Showtime at 9 p.m. ET. MMAmania.com will deliver results for the full card and comprehensive play-by-play for the televised portion of Bellator 261 below.
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 261) about the bouts and chat with all the other Maniacs during the show — it’s always a lot of fun!
BELLATOR 261 QUICK RESULTS:
265 lbs.: Timothy Johnson vs Valentin Moldavsky - Moldavsky via unanimous decision (HIGHLIGHTS)
125 lbs.: Liz Carmouche vs Kana Watanabe - Carmouche via first round knockout
145 lbs.: Daniel Weichel vs Keoni Diggs - Weichel via split decision
155 lbs.: Myles Jury vs Sydney Outlaw - Outlaw via third round submission
205 lbs.: Christian Edwards vs Simon Biyong - Edwards via unanimous decision
155 lbs.: Soren Bak vs Bobby Lee - Bak via unanimous decision
135 lbs.: Jaylon Bates vs Cody Mathews - Bates via second round submission
185 lbs.: Taylor Johnson vs Lance Wright - Johnson via first round submission
155 lbs.: Isaiah Hokit vs Corey Samuels - Samuels via first round KO (HIGHLIGHTS)
145 lbs.: John Macapa vs John de Jesus - De Jesus via split decision
BELLATOR 261 PLAY-BY-PLAY:
Timothy Johnson vs. Valentin Moldavsky
Round 1: They meet in the center of the cage. Johnson lands a clean left hand. Moldavsky trying to gauge distance. Johnson presses him up against the cage but Moldavsky reverses and takes the action to the center. Moldavsky with a clean right hand. Knee to the midsection for Moldavsky. Johnson swarms Moldavsky with a strong barrage of strikes and pushes him up against the cage. They clash heads, but no harm. Moldavsky connects with a clean left hand. 10-9 Moldavsky.
Round 2: Knee to the midsection from Moldavsky hurts Johnson, who is in visible pain. Johnson reverses position against the cage. Inside leg kick from Johnson. Johnson once again grabs a hold of Moldavsky, pushes him up against the cage. They are a bit more slippery now so he can’t hold on. Left hook lands for Moldavsky. Johnson lands a huge shot on Moldavksy but the big man eats it. Knee to the midsection for Johnson. One-two lands for Moldavsky. 10-9 Johnson.
Round 3: Inside leg kick from Moldavsky. Johnson fires back with an uppercut. Moldavsky pushes Johnson up against the cage. Moldavsky connects with a left hand but it doesn’t faze Johnson one bit. Level change for Moldavsky and he shoots for a takedown. He takes Johnson’s back. Shots to the side of the head for Moldavsky. Johnson gets off one knee but Moldavsky slams him to the canvas. Knees to the thigh. Johnson manages to escape as Moldavsky attempts to trip him down. 10-9 Moldavsky
Round 4: One-two misses for Moldavsky. Johnson bullies Moldavsky to the cage but the sambo specialist reverses position once again. Johnson rocks Moldavsky, but he shakes it off. Johnson still stalking, controlling the tempo. Moldavksy really needs to start firing off some offense if he wants to win this. Johnson in full control. Johnson is now bleeding bad from the top of his right eye. Moldavsky changes levels for a takedown but Johnson stuffs it. Both men are now covered in blood after the unintentional clash of heads. Some showmanship from Johnson to close out the round. 10-9 Johnson
Round 5: Johnson is in full control and five minutes away from becoming (interim) champion. Moldavsky grabs a hold of Johnson, but that simply won’t cut it here. He needs to start letting his hands fly in a hurry. Johnson is bleeding once again. Moldavsky shoots for a takedown but Johnson stuffs it nicely. Knee to the midsection for Johnson. There is no sense of urgency for Moldavsky, who needs a knockout or a submission to win it in my eyes. Johnson is a bloody mess, but he hasn’t really taken much punishment. The two big men meet in the center of the cage and start throwing bombs in the final 10 seconds of the fight, screaming at one another. 10-9 Johnson
Final Result: Moldavsky defeats Johnson via unanimous decision
Liz Carmouche vs. Kana Watanabe
Round 1: They come out swinging for the fences! Nothing really lands for either of them. Inside leg kick from Carmouche and she tags Watanabe with a vicious right hand. She stuns Watanabe! She’s rocked and Carmouche pounces and lands another overhand right hand. One powerful shot after another, and another. I counted at least eight clean strikes before the referee steps in to put an end to the fight. Wow! Carmouche went wild and made a statement for a shot at the title.
Final Result: Carmouche via first round knockout
Daniel Weichel vs. Keoni Diggs
Round 1: Inside leg kick from Diggs. Uppercut lands for Weichel. High kick lands for Weichel. Stiff left hands lands for Diggs. A clean right lands for Diggs. Leg kick from Diggs followed by a jab to the stomach. Nice clean right hand from Weichel, and another. Diggs isn’t backing down from the longtime veteran. Weichel changes level for a takedown, but his heart wasn’t really in it because he let it go pretty quickly. Diggs punishes him with a kick to the body and Weichel returns fire with a one-two combo. That was a close round. 10-9 Weichel.
Round 2: Weichel comes out swinging and lands a nice one-two. Diggs isn’t taking any steps backwards and tries to fire off some of his own strikes. Diggs is cut right above his left eye pretty badly. It doesn’t seem to be getting into his eyes. They exchange jabs. jab to the stomach from Weichel. Nice left hook from Diggs finds its target. Front kick from Weichel grazes Diggs. They exchange in the center of the cage, nothing really lands for either man. Diggs really relying on that left hook quite a bit. Another close round. 10-9 Weichel
Round 3: Weichel comes out quick again, and with good reason because his striking has been on point, tight and accurate all night long. Diggs comes in and lands a nice three-punch combination. Uppercut lands for Diggs. Nice inside leg kick lands for Diggs, but Weichel hands him a nice left hand for his efforts. Diggs stuns Weichel but he shakes it off. Straight right hands from the former title contender Weichel, who is now bleeding from his nose. They exchange in the middle of the cage as the round comes to a close, great round. 10-9 Diggs.
Final Result: Weichel defeats Diggs via split decision
Myles Jury vs. Sydney Outlaw
Round 1: Outlaw goes in for a single leg quickly and manages to take Jury down in the first 20 seconds. Outlaw looking for a rear-naked choke, Jury defending well. Outlaw has the hooks in, now a body lock. Jury playing defense this entire round while Outlaw looks for the submission. Three minutes in. Outlaw really cranking on the face of Jury. While not the most exciting round, Outlaw was the busier of the two offensively to take the round. 10-9 Outlaw.
Round 2: Jury whiffs on a couple of punches and Outlaw once again manages to get a takedown. He has his back again against the cage looking for a rear-naked choke. Same as the first round, Jury playing defense, not good based on what occurred in the opening round. Outlaw staying a bit more busy this time around by landing some blows to the Jury’s ears. Again not of ton of action here since it was pretty much a repeat of round one. 10-9 Outlaw
Round 3: Outlaw needs a finish here. But guess what, he takes a chance with a big shot which ends up giving Outlaw the chance to take him down once again. And again they are in the similar position, Outlaw looking for the rear-naked choke with Jury defending. What are the chances all three rounds look exactly the same? Jury is trying to escape but Outlaw is simply too strong regardless of the sweat. Nice tight body lock from Outlaw is sucking the air out of Jury and preventing him from escaping. Jury is trying to shake him off, and slams his way down to the canvas but Outlaw doesn’t let go. Jury once again picks up Outlaw and tries to shake him down with a slam but it doesn’t work. He tries it one more time but Outlaw is like an anaconda with his grip. Outlaw sinks in the rear-naked choke and he gets it with a few seconds remaining in the round.
Final Result: Outlaw defeats Jury via rear-naked choke
Christian Edwards vs. Simon Biyong
Round 1: Edwards goes in for a takedown but slips and ends up in Biyong’s guard. Biyong picks Edwards up and carries him across the cage and slams him. Edwards manages to get back up to his feet and land a high kick. Edwards lands a nice knee to Biyong’s face the drops him momentarily. Biyong calls for time because he loses his mouthpiece, giving him more time to recover. And he needed it because he was on wobbly legs. Biyong with a single leg and Edwards with elbows to the side of the head. 10-9 Edwards
Round 2: The doctor checked on Biyong before allowing him to come out for the second round. Inside leg kick from Biyong. Edwards connects with a nice left hand and pushes Biyong up against the cage. Edwards loses his mouthpiece and we have a small break. Edwards with the underhooks. In and out for Biyong but doesn't connect. Edwards whiffs on a left hand. Front kick from Edwards. Not a ton of action this round. 10-9 Edwards
Round 3: They high five and Biyong wants a hug, as well. Nice leg kick from Edwards and Biyong returns fire. Biyong grabs a hold of Edwards and pushes him up against the cage. Not doing much with this position. Edwards with a stiff right hands that stuns Biyong. Nice right hands lands clean for Edwards. Great head movement from Edwards, ducking and dodging a barrage of strikes from Biyong. Edwards now has Biyong up against the cage. They separate and Biyong lands a nice left hand. They clinch with 10 seconds remaining and Edwards ends the fight with numerous knees to the body. 10-9 Edwards
Final Result: Edwards defeats Biyong via unanimous decision
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