Rick Hawn and Jay Hieron at Bellator 43

Rick Hawn and Jay Hieron at Bellator 43

Former IFL welterweight champion Jay Hieron kept his return streak alive on Saturday night at Bellator 43 in Newkirk, Okla., moving into a title fight with Bellator champion Ben Askren.

Hieron used his experience and savvy to keep former Olympic Judoka Rick Hawn at bay for the better part of their three-round bout. While Hawn continues to sharpen his striking arsenal, Hieron used an evasive countering style against Hawn’s aggressive, pressuring tactics.

Hawn closed strong, improving as the seconds ticked away, but Hieron was sharper earlier in the fight, constantly stinging Hawn with an array of punches, knees, and kicks, as he circled away from Hawn’s power.

It was a close fight, with an exciting flurry at the final bell, but Hieron left with cage with a split decision victory and a ticket to a title shot.

“Hard work pays off, I live by that,” said Hieron, $100,000 richer as the tournament champion.

“Askren, shine up my belt for me, I’m coming for it!”

Bryan Baker at one time fell just one fight short of a Bellator middleweight title shot, but he’s on the road to recovery. Since losing in Season 2 middleweight tournament final, Baker has won back-to-back fights, the second of which was an impressive knockout victory over UFC veteran Joe Riggs on Saturday night.

The opening round was primarily a long feeling out process; although Baker landed a couple head kicks to keep Riggs on his heels.

Round two was much the same, albeit at a higher pace than the first, but it was Baker that found the button first. One left hook on the chin sent Riggs face down… fight over.

“That’s exactly what I was looking for to get in, finish, and show my greatness,” Baker said after the fight.

Former WEC bantamweight champion continued his run back towards the top of the division by submitting Jose Vega. It was obvious from the onset that Beebe was searching for the guillotine, latching it on a couple of times early in the opening round from the standing position. Slightly more than four minutes in, he locked it on for good when the fight hit the ground.

With the victory, Beebe ran his streak to four consecutive victories, and joined Eduardo Dantas in Bellator’s Season 5 bantamweight tournament.

Heavyweight bruiser Ron Sparks may have wanted to pound Vince Lucero out, but it wasn’t to be. He did batter Lucero early with some heavy punches, but put him on the mat by kicking his leg out. Spark dropped down into side control and was served up with a keylock for the tap.

Bellator 43 Main Card Results:
-Jay Hieron def. Rick Hawn by Split Decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
-Bryan Baker def. Joe Riggs by KO (Punch) at 3:53, R2
-Chase Beebe def. Jose Vega by Submission (Guillotine Choke) at 4:06, R1
-Ron Sparks def. Vince Lucero by Submission (Keylock) at 2:18, R1

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

Related News

UFC Fight Night 93 Results: Alexander Gustafsson Mauls Jan Blachowicz

  • 27 days ago
  • 22 views

Second-ranked light heavyweight Alexander Gustafsson snapped a two-fight losing streak in the UFC Fight Night 93 co-main event on Saturday, defeating up-and-comer Jan Blachowicz. read news >>

UFC 203 Free Fight: Stipe Miocic Takes Out Mark Hunt with Punches

  • 25 days ago
  • 32 views

Stipe Miocic began his three-fight win streak that led to the UFC heavyweight title with TKO a victory over Mark Hunt. Watch the full fight video. read news >>

Bellator Continues Global Expansion with Championship Fight in Israel

  • 23 days ago
  • 10 views

Bellator continues its global expansion under the leadership of company president Scott Coker with a November event in Israel. read news >>

Alexandre Bezerra Feels No Pressure Heading into Titan FC Title Fight | MMAWeekly.com

  • 21 days ago
  • 6 views

Alexandre Bezerra will look to keep his winning streak going when he makes his Titan FC debut on Friday to challenge Andre Harrison for the 145-pound title. read news >>

RFA 43 Results and Highlights: Brian Camozzi Earns Title with First-Round Finish | MMAWeekly.com

  • 20 days ago
  • 12 views

In a battle for the RFA welterweight title, Brian Camozzi landed a first-round guillotine choke to finish Nick Barnes and walk away with the belt. read news >>

Kell Brook Falls Short as Golovkin Earns Stoppage in Fifth Round | FIGHTLAND

  • 18 days ago
  • 5 views

Photo via Kell Brook/facebook Kell “The Special One” Brook’s audacious bid to jump up two weight divisions and dethrone fearsome middleweight king Gennady “GGG” Golovkin was cut short as he was stopp read news >>

Veta Arteaga Knows What She Signed Up for at Bellator 161 | MMAWeekly.com

  • 17 days ago
  • 17 views

Undefeated flyweight Veta Arteaga knows what she signed up for at Bellator 161, and she's ready. read news >>

Derek Campos Expecting Explosive Fight with Djamil Chan at Bellator 161 | MMAWeekly.com

  • 17 days ago
  • 5 views

Derek Campos steps into a Bellator 161 lightweight bout against Djamil Chan on Friday, in what could very well end up being a title elimination bout. read news >>

Did Bellator Find Its Own Paige VanZant in Russian Flyweight Anastasia Yankova?

  • 17 days ago
  • 70 views

Anastasia Yankova is very pretty. It feels disingenuous to start anywhere else. It's always been a part of her story, even back to her amateur days at a tournament where no one would cheer for her. S read news >>

Tony Johnson Believes a Win Over Cheick Kongo Paves Way to Bellator Title Shot | MMAWeekly.com

  • 16 days ago
  • 9 views

Tony Johnson has worked his way into a heavyweight main event fight against Cheick Kongo at Bellator 161 on Friday. Is it his route to the title? read news >>