With Paul Daley being taken out of the tournament due to visa issues stemming from allegations of a bar fight, and War Machine being pulled out of the tournament due to injuries, Bellator had some spots to fill in the eighth seasons welterweight tournament. Now, they have finalized the brackets, and the tournament is set to commence on the season’s second event–Bellator 86. The opening round fights are as follows.
Marius Zaromskis vs. Brent Weedman
Zaromskis returns for a second run at a 170 tournament after literally being knocked out in the semi-finals of last season’s tournament by eventual winner Andrey Koreshkov. For his opponent Weedman, this will be his fourth shot in a Bellator tournament, and his third at 170 after moving back up from lightweight. This one has a high possibility of ending on the feet since both fighters are proficient in their standup.
Douglas Lima vs. Michail Tsarev
Lima is trying to get a second crack at current champion Ben Askren after being severely out-wrestled in their fight. Tsarev will be looking to rebound from his first knockout loss of his career in the season seven welterweight tournament from former champ Lyman Good. If this fight stays on the feet it could be all Lima due to his skill, and Tsarev will be looking to use his vaunted grappling skills.
Jose Gomes vs. Raul Amaya
These two fighters are the least known in the tournament, but it may be easier for them to fly under the radar. Without the added pressure of being a tournament favorite, it may be easier for these two to compete at their full ability, unlike some fighters who deal with the pressure put on them in the featured slots.
Koffi Adzisto vs. Ben Saunders
This may be Saunders last chance in a Bellator tournament, as he already has one very convincing loss to Lima from a previous tournament. For Adzisto, this is his first shot in the big leagues, and he has a big test in his debut. Saunders is known for his clinch work and thai knees. Those could end up playing a big factor in this fight if Adzisto cannot escape them.