Storley tops ‘MVP,’ wins interim welterweight title


LONDON — Logan Storley claimed the interim Bellator Welterweight title in London on Friday with a split-decision (48-47, 47-48, 49-46) victory over Michael “Venom” Page on the OVO Area Wembley.

Web page was trying to change into simply the third-ever British fighter to change into a world champion in MMA, following Michael Bisping (UFC Middleweight champion in 2016) and Liam McGeary (Bellator Gentle Heavyweight champion in 2015), however didn’t get the job accomplished at Bellator 281 in arguably the most important night time of his profession.

Web page, whose nickname is “MVP,” was initially scheduled to face Yaroslov Amosov, who needed to withdraw as a result of his energetic service in Ukraine following Russia’s invasion in February. Storley stepped in with eight weeks to organize for the struggle.

Storely tapped into his four-time NCAA All-American wrestling pedigree as he tussled with Web page for a lot of an uneventful opening spherical, a theme for the struggle because the American repeatedly aimed to carry the struggle to the mat.

The South Dakota-born fighter appeared higher within the second spherical, too, conserving Web page, who Bellator’s No. 9 ranked pound-for-pound fighter, at bay. However MVP sprang into motion within the third, opening with a leaping knee kick, in addition to touchdown a collection of highly effective blows.

The London crowd booed on-and-off for within the remaining spherical of the struggle as Storley appeared to maintain Web page off his ft, at all times staying busy sufficient to keep away from a restart.

Web page appeared for a end within the ultimate spherical however went unsuccessful, leaving his destiny to the judges, who awarded the win to Storley.

“Boo me all you need, no person stands with him,” Storley advised the group after the struggle. “So can boo me, however I am the world champ.”

The win for Storley means he follows within the footsteps of his hometown hero Brock Lesnar in changing into an MMA world champion. The pair each wrestled at Webster Excessive Faculty in rural South Dakota.

Storely’s solely profession defeat got here towards Amosov through cut up choice in November 2020.

Middleweight: Fabian Edwards (10-2) def. Lyoto Machida (26-12) through knockout

For Machida, one other struggle brings one other defeat.

The previous UFC Gentle Heavyweight champion entered the cage for the primary time in over a yr on Friday however suffered a fourth-straight defeat, this time by the hands of Edwards.

Edwards, who calls himself “The Dragon”, landed a devastating left hook on the finish of the primary spherical within the co-main occasion, sending No. 6-ranked Machida crashing to the ground earlier than he adopted up with a collection of blows to earn a knockout victory.

The Birmingham-born fighter entered Friday needing a victory himself having misplaced his two earlier bouts, his earlier win coming in 2019.

Girls’s Flyweight: Kana Watanabe (11-1-1) def. Denise Kielholtz (6-4) by submission

Watanabe can set her eyes on a rematch with flyweight title struggle with reigning champion Liz Carmouche after she earned a submission victory over No. 2 ranked Kielholtz.

The struggle received off to an explosive begin as Kielholtz delivered a left hook within the opening seconds and appeared to have taken the primary spherical. Nonetheless, Kielholtz made an unlawful kick to Watanabe’s face, inflicting the referee to problem some extent deduction. That might not come to matter although as Wanatabe took down her opponent and compelled her to faucet out underneath the strain of a triangle maintain.

No. 3-ranked Watanabe misplaced to Caramouche through technical knockout final June. Friday’s victory extends her Bellator report to 3-1.

Welterweight: Paul Daley (44-18-2) def. Wendell Giacomo (9-3) through knockout

Daley can journey off into the sundown along with his head held excessive.

The English fighter ended his 19-year profession on Friday with a shocking second-round knockout-victory over Bellator debutant Giacomo.

Daley, 39, was combating in his sixty fourth skilled bout and put an finish to a profession that started in 2003 and noticed him battle with Nick Diaz, Michael Web page and Douglas Lima amongst others, in addition to changing into a welterweight champion within the now-defunct Cage Rage.

“I am fairly emotional,” Daley stated, because the London crowd chanted his identify. “If it wasn’t for the followers. There has by no means been a fighter who has been on the prime of the pyramid, fell to this point and stored at it like I’ve.”

Giacomo appeared the higher of the 2 fighters within the first spherical, pinning his opponent to the mat with lengthy clinches, however Daley tapped into his wealth of expertise and delivered a sensational proper hook to earn himself a victorious farewell.

Gentle Heavyweight: Simon Biyong (8-2) def. Luke Trainer (5-1) through unanimous choice

Biyong scored a unanimous choice (29-27, 28-27, 29-28) handy Luke Coach the primary defeat of his skilled profession.

The 31-year-old, combating out of Genoa, Italy by the best way of Cameroon, scored a unanimous choice victory over Coach in a rollercoaster struggle.

Biyong was flattened by Coach within the first spherical and survived as his opponent tried for a choke. He rebounded within the second spherical, chopping Coach early on earlier than mounting him on the mat and delivering a barrage of punches. Coach was capable of pressure the struggle to a 3rd spherical, however one other dominant spherical from Biyong was sufficient to safe an vital victory.

Friday’s victory was Biyong’s first in Bellator, having misplaced his solely earlier struggle within the promotion in June 2021.

“I am again, mild heavyweight [division]. Prepare,” Biyong stated. “I am again!”

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