Cageside Press does not always pick Bellator fights, but a heavyweight tournament bout and a great title fight make Bellator 192 special.
|Staff Writers||Corrales vs. Karakhanyan||Kruchten vs. Pico||Yamauchi vs. Chandler||Lima vs. MacDonald||Sonnen vs. Rampage|
|Heath Harshman (3-0)|
|Jesse Gillette (3-0)|
|Dan Doherty (2-1)|
|Jason Payne (2-1)|
|Mike Straus (2-1)|
|Paarth Pande (2-1)|
|Jay Anderson (2-1)|
|Mike McClory (1-2)|
|Harry Davies (1-2)|
|Gabriel Gonzalez (1-2)|
|Eddie Law (1-2)|
Bellator has been out of commission for several weeks, but they are kicking off the new year with a bang with Bellator 192. The heavyweight grand prix will commence, and Rory MacDonald will look to acquire his first Bellator strap.
Chael Sonnen and Rampage Jackson will face off in the heavyweight division to kick off the tournament. Chael is a career middleweight but moved to light heavyweight in 2013 and is 2-3 since then, most recently beating Wanderlei Silva. Rampage Jackson has had great success in Bellator after dropping his final three UFC bouts. Rampage is 5-1 since joining the new promotion and has slowly but surely become a heavyweight. The bigger man in this bout is Rampage, and that’s who seven of our 11 writers sided with.
The co-main event is an excellent welterweight title fight between Douglas Lima and former top UFC contender Rory MacDonald. Douglas Lima has been a great welterweight for Bellator since joining the promotion in 2011. Lima has accumulated an 11-2 record with Bellator and is currently on his second stint with the belt, most recently defending against former UFC contender Lorenz Larkin. Rory MacDonald looked incredible in his Bellator debut against Paul Daley late last year, dominating the Brit through and through and earning a shot at the title. All but two of the 11 writers sided with the Canadian MacDonald.
Michael Chandler will battle Goiti Yamauchi after losing his title to Brent Primus via injury. Scott Coker confirmed that the winner will receive a shot at Primus. Chandler is 13-4 with the organization and is looking for his third stint with the lightweight title. Yamauchi is 8-2 with the promotion and has won three straight contests after moving up to the lightweight division. Cageside Press unanimously picked the former champion.
Aaron Pico looks to make it two straight against promotional newcomer Shane Kruchten. Pico is a 21-year-old wrestling phenom who is 1-1 in his young MMA career. Kruchten is 12-3 and most recently competed in WSOF. Two writers bucked the trend and picked against the top prospect Pico.
Opening up the Bellator 192 main card is a featherweight bout between veterans Henry Corrales and Georgi Karakhanyan. Corrales lost his first three bouts with promotion to the best Bellator’s featherweight division has to offer, but has since won two straight, including a knockout of Cody Bollinger. Karakhanyan is 6-5 with the organization, but is 4-3 on his current stint winning three of his last four, most recently agianst UFC vet Daniel Pineda. This was the closest result of both this event an UFC 220, with six picks for Karakhanyan and five for Corrales.