Perhaps it wasn't the most exciting championship defense in MMA history, but Ben Askren got the job done on Friday as he defended the Bellator welterweight belt against Douglas Lima with a decision. Askren's wrestling once again took center stage as he took down and controlled Lima in round after round. Though Lima tried to sweep Askren and use submissions to create offense, Askren had no problem fending off every sub attempt.
After the fight, Askren had a message for the fans who booed his ground-heavy style.
"I was told you Canadians like fighting," he said. "If you don't like the ground work, there's a sport they call boxing. It's not as fun, though. I suggest you keep coming here and watching my [expletive] whippings."
In other Bellator action, Marlon Sandro moved to the final of the featherweight tournament with a close decision over Alexandre "Popo" Bezerra. Popo never found a rhythm as Sandro landed more punches when they did engage each other.
In the opening round of the bantamweight tournament, Travis Marx moved on with an upset decision over Makatsu Ueda. Hiroshi Nakamura also moved on in a decision win, holding off Rodigo Lima's leglock attempts throughout the bout.
Chiesa takes decision
On "The Ultimate Fighter," Michael Chiesa moved to the next round with a two-round decision over Jeremy Larsen. Chiesa used his significant reach advantage to move inside and score takedowns. In the final minute of the second round, Chiesa came close to getting a choke. That submission attempt was likely enough to give Chiesa the win.
Next week's bout will feature Joe Proctor from Team Faber against Team Cruz's Chris Tickle who battled health problems over the course of the week.