Light heavyweights Liam McGeary and Phil Davis both had a big night at Bellator Dynamite 1 last night.
First, Davis (pictured above) advanced his MMA record to 15-3 by winning the evening’s light heavyweight tournament. Davis, who was making his promotional debut, first scored a dominant submission win over Emanuel Newton in the tournament’s first round, and then stunned the crowd with a spectacular knockout of alternate Francis Carmont in the final. The tournament win left Davis standing tall as the next challenger for the Bellator title.
Then, Bellator light heavyweight champion McGeary ran his undefeated MMA record to 11-0 with an upset win over Tito Ortiz. McGeary, who was as much as a ten-to-one underdog, snared a rare inverted triangle submission, netting the biggest victory of his career.
So it’s fitting they shared the spotlight at the end of yesterday’s event.
According to Bellator president Scott Coker, they’ll share the cage again soon, too.
“I think that’s probably a fight we’ll promote sometime in the first quarter of next year, and I think it’s going to be a great match-up,” Coker said in the Dynamite post-fight press conference. “It’s going to be a good battle.”
Coker was also asked about the tournament’s loss of Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal, who had to be replaced by Carmont due to injury in his first round bout. Did it give him any pause about future tournament plans?
Coker’s answer: “Not at all.”
“I think tournament has a place, but it depends on athletes,” he explained. “We wouldn’t have done this tournament if we didn’t think we had four of the greatest 205’ers, and could put them together. Are we going to do them all the time? But we will continue to do tournaments, all in one night. That’s the way to do it. Yeah, King Mo got hurt, but that’s how it works. It could have worked the other way, and Phil (Davis) could have gotten hurt.”
The Dynamite 1 press conference video is available here: