Injury has knocked the fearsome Melvin Manhoef out of the Bellator 210 main event later this month, and John Salter is stepping up to take his place.
Bellator 210 has undergone a shake-up to the main event. Bellator MMA CEO Scott Coker announced via social media on Thursday that the card, scheduled for later this month, had lost Melvin Manhoef. The feared middleweight striker represented one half of the headlining fight, as he was set to go toe-to-toe against Chidi Njokuani in a striking lover’s dream. However, Manhoef has been forced off the card due to injury, and in his place steps John Salter.
— Scott Coker (@ScottCoker) November 1, 2018
Salter (15-4), aged 33, had a seven fight win streak snapped at Bellator 205 when Rafael Lovato Jr. submitted him late in the third round. That fight had been brewing for years, given both man’s status in the grappling world. Salter now gets a relatively quick turnaround, and a chance to get back in the win column against Njokuani.
Chidi Njokuani (18–5 (1)) will now have to change his game plan to contend with Salter’s grappling prowess, rather than Manhoef’s striking. Younger brother to UFC veteran Anthony Njokuani, Chidi is 8-1 in his last nine. He made his middleweight debut at Bellator 189, earning a unanimous decision win against Hisaki Kato after struggling to make the welterweight limit for years.
Bellator 210 takes place November 30 at the WinStar World Casino and Resort in Thackerville, Oklahoma.