Bellator 67 Michael Chandler and Akihiro Gono Poster
It’s one thing to be a great underdog and pull off the upset. It’s a whole other animal to go out and win when the whole world expects great things out of you.

That’s what Bellator lightweight champion Michael Chandler had to deal with as he headed into his first fight after winning the 155lb by defeating former champion Eddie Alvarez.

Standing in front of Chandler was former Pride and UFC fighter Akihiro Gono, who throughout his career has faced and defeated some of the best in the world, but it appeared heading into Saturday night that his best and brightest days were behind him.

That didn’t mean Gono wasn’t still a dangerous opponent, but most looked at this fight as a measuring stick for Chandler. How will the champion react when he’s supposed to win as opposed to pulling the upset.

Well, Michael Chandler passed with flying colors.

Attacking from the word go, Chandler pressed forward on Gono looking to land strikes and it didn’t take long for him to find a home for his right hand. Chandler clipped Gono once with his right, and then followed up with a second right hand that sent the Japanese fighter tumbling to the mat.

Chandler followed him there and like a machine gun, reeled off a barrage of shots that forced referee Yves Lavigne to step in and stop the carnage. In only :56 seconds, Michael Chandler showed that he was the real deal by beating a veteran, and proving everybody right that picked him as the favorite.

He will now move on to his first Bellator title defense later this summer.

One side of the Bellator welterweight tournament final is now set as former middleweight Bryan Baker looked much more impressive during his second trip to 170lbs as he defeated former Ultimate Fighter competitor Ben Saunders to punch his ticket to the last match up in the tourney.

Baker used his wrestling to control Saunders for much of the fight, and while he did have to stave off several submission attempts, his power and takedowns controlled the action. In the 2nd round, Baker even fired off some nasty punches that made Saunders respect his stand up.

Baker’s dominant mat control was enough to sway the judges in his favor as he pulled off the unanimous decision.

Heavyweights Damian Grabowski and Dave Huckaba faced off in the third bout on the Bellator 67 main card.

Grabowski knew the perfect game plan to win the fight, and it fell together in basically every round as he took Huckaba to the mat over and over again. It may not have satisfied the biggest part of the crowd in Canada, but it was enough to get Grabowski the unanimous decision win.

In the kick off fight for Bellator 67, popular Canadian fighter Ryan Ford ended Luis Santos’ night with a thunderous knee to earn the knockout victory, but it wasn’t without some trouble earlier in the fight.

During the first round, Santos fired off a quick high kick that blasted Ford and sent him down to the mat. Santos worked hard to punish Ford on the ground, but the crafty Canadian was able to survive and get to round two.

In the second session, Ford worked from the clinch as Santos battled for position. It was there that Ford unloaded a huge knee strike that clocked Santos right on the chin.

Santos dropped to the mat and after a few more strikes Ford finished the fight and picked up an impressive win.

Follow @DamonMartin on Twitter or e-mail Damon Martin.
For more
UFC News and UFC Rumors, follow MMAWeekly.com on Twitter and Facebook.

view original article >>
Report here if this news is invalid.

Related News

Antonio Braga Neto out, Dominique Steele in against Zak Cummings at UFC on FOX 16

  • 20 days ago
  • 3 views

Strikeforce and Bellator veteran Dominique Steele will have an opportunity to compete on the big stage of the UFC after Antonio Braga Neto was forced out of his UFC on FOX 16 bout with Zak Cummings.F read news >>

Sean Grande replaces veteran Bellator brodcaster Sean Wheelock

  • 19 days ago
  • 2 views

Bellator has its first major change in the broadcast booth since the fight promotion introduced Sean Wheelock and Jimmy Smith in 2010.Filed under: Bellator, News read news >>

Melvin Guillard to make Bellator debut against Brandon Girtz August 28

  • 14 days ago
  • 2 views

Bellator has announced the debut fight for UFC veteran Melvin Guillard. All the details are right here. Bellator has officially set the details for the debut of Melvin Guillard. The former UFC Lightw read news >>

Clifford Starks replaces Thiago Silva, faces Mike Kyle at WSOF 22

  • a day ago
  • 1 views

UFC and Bellator veteran Clifford Starks has replaced fellow UFC veteran Thiago Silva for this Saturday's WSOF 22 in a bout opposite Strikeforce alumnus Mike Kyle, the promotion announced Tuesday. Si read news >>

Cheick Kongo open to fights with Lashley, 'Kimbo Slice,' wants to stay active

  • 28 days ago
  • 2 views

Bellator heavyweight Cheick Kongo is open to fighting anyone on the promotion’s big-man roster, as long as he gets to it soon.Filed under: Bellator, News, Videos read news >>

Stream or download MMAjunkie Radio #1993 with Cheick Kongo and David Rickels

  • 28 days ago
  • 0 views

Stream or download Tuesday’s edition of MMAjunkie Radio with guests Cheick Kongo and David Rickels.Filed under: Bellator, MMAjunkie Radio, News, Radio read news >>

Kharitonov not considering retirement: 'I think my fighting career is only at its beginning'

  • 28 days ago
  • 14 views

PRIDE and Strikeforce veteran Sergei Kharitonov discusses his upcoming fight at M-1 Challenge 59, as well as his career expectations over the coming years. Although Russian star Sergei Kharitonov beg read news >>

MMAjunkie Radio (noon ET): Bellator 'Knockout of the Year' candidate Hisaki Kato

  • 28 days ago
  • 4 views

MMAjunkie Radio kicks off at noon ET (9 a.m. PT) with guest Hisaki Kato.Filed under: Bellator, MMAjunkie Radio, News read news >>

Hisaki Kato on Bellator 139 upset: 'I was there to be knocked out by Joe Schilling'

  • 28 days ago
  • 2 views

Hisaki Kato said he was purposely positioned as an underdog to Joe Schilling at Bellator 139.Filed under: Bellator, News, Videos read news >>

USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie rankings, June 30: 'Soldier of God' on the rise

  • 28 days ago
  • 0 views

After a weekend with Bellator 139 and UFC Fight Night 70, the USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie MMA rankings got an update, and “Soldier of God” was the big winner.Filed under: Bellator, MMA Rankings, News, read news >>