Two Main Card Bouts Added to ‘Bellator 172’ on Feb. 18 in San Jose
Cheick Kongo (25-10-2) will challenge Oli Thompson (17-9) during the main card of “Bellator 172: Fedor vs. Mitrione” on February 18, 2017 at SAP Center in San Jose, Calif. In addition, undefeated lightweights Adam Piccolotti (9-0) and Brent Primus (7-0) are also set to face off during the Spike-televised card.
In the main event of “Bellator 172: Fedor vs. Mitrione,” Fedor Emelianenko (36-4, 1 NC) will compete on American Soil for the first since 2011, when he meets Matt Mitrione (11-5). The event will air LIVE and FREE on SPIKE at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT. Tickets for the event start at only $30 and are available at SAP Center Box Office, Bellator.com and Ticketmaster.com. Additional fights will be announced in coming weeks.
Since joining the Bellator MMA fray in 2013, Kongo has strung together an impressive run that has seen him emerge victorious in seven of nine contests, including three consecutive victories. With 37 career fights under his belt, the Frenchman has tallied 25 professional wins, including 12 by way of knockout. The knockout artist hopes to build off his victory over Tony Johnson at “Bellator 161: Kongo vs. Johnson,” when he welcomes British sensation Oli Thompson back into the Bellator cage.
Hailing from East Sussex, England, Thompson enters the matchup in search of his first career win under the direction of the Scott Coker-led promotion. Dating back to 2015, “The Spartan” collected wins in five of his last six bouts, including a pair of brutal first round knockouts. Of his 17 career wins, the 36-year-old powerhouse has finished 13 of them, including seven knockouts. A former title-holder of Britain’s Strongest Man competition, Thompson will now look to add to that total when he and Kongo faceoff at SAP Center in San Jose.
Fighting out of Half Moon Bay, Calif., the undefeated Piccolotti is set to return to San Jose, where he has dominated competition over the past few years. Since signing with Bellator MMA, the 28-year-old lightweight has won all five of his bouts, including four consecutive victories in the “Capital of Silicon Valley.” Piccolotti dazzled in his most recent win over Brandon Girtz, ending the veteran’s three-fight winning streak while once again displaying his lethal combination of flawless jiu-jitsu and striking. Piccolotti has finished his opponent in six of nine career wins and three of his past four, making him one of the most dangerous weapons in the 155-pound division.
Primus also carries with him an undefeated target on his chest, as the battle to remain an unbeaten lightweights goes through SAP Center in 2017. Similar to Piccolotti, Primus saw immediate success in the world of mixed martial arts, recording first round finishes in each of his first five fights to begin his professional career. The five-time Bellator MMA veteran hopes to keep the ball rolling, as a win over the fan-favorite Piccolotti would certainly open a lot of doors. Hailing from Portland, Oregon, the 31-years-old Primus hopes to build off of a 2016 campaign that was highlighted by a key win over Brazilian veteran “Toninho Furia.”
Updated “Bellator 172: Fedor vs. Mitrione” Main Card:
Heavyweight Main Event: Fedor Emelianenko (36-4, 1 NC) vs. Matt Mitrione (11-5)
Heavyweight Feature Bout: Cheick Kongo (25-10-2) vs. Oli Thompson (17-9)
Lightweight Feature Bout: Adam Piccolotti (9-0) vs. Brent Primus (7-0)
Welterweight Prelim Bout: James Terry (18-9) vs. David Douglas (9-6)
Lightweight Prelim Bout: Nikko Jackson (1-1) vs. Cesar Gonzalez (0-1)
Featherweight Prelim Bout: Juan Cardenas (1-0) vs. Luis Vargas (0-1)
Welterweight Prelim Bout: Danasabe Mohammed (5-1) vs. Carlos Rocha (9-4)
Flyweight Prelim Bout: Anthony Do (4-1) vs. Bobby Escalante (4-5)
Flyweight Prelim Bout: Matt Ramirez (1-2) vs. Jeremy Murphy (3-3)
Lightweight Prelim Bout: J.J. Okanovich (3-1) vs. Paradise Vaovasa (5-1)
Featherweight Prelim Bout: Justin Tenedora (Debut) vs. Roque Reyes (0-3)
Fedor Emelianenko vs. Matt Mitrione!
One of MMA’s most sought-after free agents has found himself a home as Bellator MMA has come to terms on a multi-fight deal with Fedor Emelianenko (36-4), securing the talents of the man many consider to be the greatest heavyweight fighter of all-time.
The Scott Coker-led promotion is also pleased to announce that Emelianenko will compete on American Soil for the first since 2011, when he meets Matt Mitrione (11-5) in the main event of “Bellator 172: Fedor vs. Mitrione” on Saturday, February 21 at the SAP Center in San Jose, Calif. The event will air LIVE and FREE on SPIKE at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT. Additional fights will be announced in coming weeks.
Tickets for “Bellator 172: Fedor vs. Mitrione” start at only $30, with an exclusive “Bellator Nation” pre-sale running on Monday, November 21 and tickets going on sale to the public on Tuesday, November 22 at 10 a.m. PST. Tickets are available at SAP Center Box Office, Bellator.com and Ticketmaster.com.
“The Last Emperor” is one of the most revered and respected heavyweight fighters the sport has ever seen. Stone-faced and quiet, Emelianenko boasted one of the most impressive unbeaten streaks in the history of the sport. A multi-time World Champion in MMA and Sambo, Fedor recently returned to the sport after a short hiatus, accumulating two wins since his return to action.
“It’s great to be back in business with Fedor,” Bellator MMA President Scott Coker said. “The man is a legend both inside and outside of the cage and I’m elated to bring him back Stateside for the American MMA fans to witness him fight Matt Mitrione in San Jose. He and I go quite aways back, and I look forward to continuing to build our partnership here in Bellator MMA.”
A Pride, as well as World Allegiance of Mixed Martial Arts Heavyweight champion, the man once promoted by President-Elect Donald Trump was one half of some of the most memorable fights that the sport of MMA has ever seen, including wins against the likes of: Mirko Cro Cop, Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira (2x), Mark Coleman (2x), Kevin Randleman, Mark Hunt, Andrei Arlovski, and Pedro Rizzo.
Emelianenko’s success has not only been seen inside the world of MMA either, as he also served in the realm of politics, where he serves as a staff member of Russia’s Council of Physical Fitness & Sports since 2012.
Matt Mitrione remains poised to make an immediate impact in the Bellator heavyweight division following two emphatic wins since signing with Bellator in 2016. The Illinois native and standout defensive end at Purdue University earned All-Big Ten honors in 2000 and subsequently earned his way into the NFL where he played six seasons as a member of the New York Giants and Minnesota Vikings.
Still yearning to compete following the NFL, Mitrione found the sport of MMA after close friend and professional baseball player Jayson Werth requested Mitrione fight in his start-up promotion. After relocating to Indianapolis, Mitrione ultimately found his way into the UFC where he became a high-level competitor inside the promotion, defeating the likes of: the late Kimbo Slice, Derrick Lewis, and Gabriel Gonzaga.
“Bellator 172: Fedor vs. Mitrione”
Heavyweight Main Event: Fedor Emelianenko (36-4) vs. Matt Mitrione (11-5)