Did you watch Bellator 120: Rampage vs. King Mo this past weekend, either legally or illegal?
If you did, any chance that you felt like you were sitting in on a pro wrestling event from years ago?
Not too long ago, but maybe right around the time of the “Monday Night War?” For those that are not wrestling fans – either current or past – you probably have no clue what I’m talking about. But those that follow our sister site, Wrestle Newz, they understand.
When both the WWE, which was than called the WWF, and WCW were at their prime, fireworks were going off each and every week. Talent was being signed away from one side to the other. “Attacks” were being made from both within each organization and to the other.
For a wrestling fan, things were good. Maybe too good, as there was no chance for such a war to continue over a prolonged stretch of time. WCW was purchased by Vince McMahon and killed. The WWE continues to reign as kings today.
This weekend, it felt like Bellator had a script planned straight from the hands of TNA – a wrestling promotion that airs on Spike TV and is trying to compete with the WWE.
Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal, who wears a crown to the cage and was escorted by “ladies” and had an umbrella with him at weigh-ins – indoors – played the role of “Stone Cold” Steve Austin perfectly. He called out Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney for “dick-riding” Quinton “Rampage” Jackson on a handful of instances.
Lawal’s interview during the program was cut off, either on purpose or on accident, and they decided to go right back to him. Moments after his outrageous remarks were aired. After his loss to Jackson in the main event, King Mo again referred to Rebney as “dick-riding” Jackson.
Sound like a pro wrestling storyline? Sure does. Many feel the feud between Jackson and Lawal is orchestrated. I’m not sure, but the one between Lawal and Rebney sure sounds fictional.
If that wasn’t enough, Tito Ortiz made his triumphant return after two years away from action and submitted the Bellator middleweight champion in mere minutes. Ortiz took Alexander Shlemenko down and locked up a choke.
Shlemenko, a Russian who issued a video challenge to Ortiz, never tapped out. Instead, after seemingly becoming frozen as Ortiz secured the choke, Shlemenko went out.
Ortiz held a decisive advantage in weight, coming into the fight almost 30 pounds heavier than Shlemenko. But the champion was riding an impressive win streak, and had just finished two title-contenders.
Again, like the Jackson-Lawal feud, many quickly took to social media and called the fight “fixed.”
Bellator did a great job in setting the stage for each fight with video packages and interviews, but it made the entire main card run long. Over three hours long.
If Bellator did anything to “arrange” things for the event, I would be greatly surprised. In this day and age, word leaking out is almost not worth going to great lengths to keep secrets. Everybody seemingly has somebody they know to extract information.
Things just felt really weird throughout the night.