Bellator 216’s Justin Sumter Coming Back to Where It All Started

Justin Sumter
Justin Sumter Credit: MMA-Today / CES MMA

Justin Sumter is returning to Bellator with an eye on turning things around after a tough loss on Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series.

When Bellator 216 goes down this Saturday, the second of two back-to-back Bellator events this weekend, Massachusetts native Justin Sumter will be back where it all began. In Bellator, that is, where he made his pro debut. While he came up short that night in 2016, he’ll look to make the most out of his fight at Bellator 216 against Reginaldo Felix.

Sumter is also a CES (Class Entertainment & Sports) vet, and he competed on Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series. But getting a chance to fight near your own backyard is something “The Fort” just couldn’t pass up.

“I feel real good,” Sumter told Cageside Press in a recent interview. “For one, especially because this fight is kinda local for me. All my fans and some friends that live up here in Connecticut have been dying for me to have a fight somewhere closer so they can go.”

“This Bellator [event] just happened to show up and I was able to lock that in, and now I’m super excited to fight in front of my fans.”

Bellator 216 will go down this Saturday (Feb. 16, 2019) from the Mohegan Sun Arena in  Uncasville, Connecticut. As of this writing, Sumpter will be fighting Reginaldo Felix on the prelims which will stream live on DAZN and the Bellator app, as well as here on Cageside Press.

Regardless of what time of the day he fights Felix, Sumter knows his Brazilian adversary is a very dangerous man. Perhaps that’s why Sumter spent some extra time hitting mitts with a former UFC light heavyweight title challenger.

“I definitely got some extra training in with Glover Teixeira and the guys at his gym over at Teixeira MMA,” Sumpter revealed. “I changed up a little of my strength and conditioning, doing more explosive movements. I’m always working on my cardio. Most of it was business as usual.”

For Sumter, business as usual usually means a steady diet of the stand-up game. And the 29-year-old isn’t playing coy either. It’s pretty obvious what he wants to do in this fight.

“My strength is definitely my striking,” Sumter said. “I definitely have the upper hand with reach. As well as, I think I’m a little bit faster than him and my timing can get the better of him.”

“But I also like to throw some wrestling in there,” Sumter continued. “My ability to change levels and take them down throws them off guard and keeps them guessing.”

If fighting a very tough Brazilian wasn’t difficult enough, Sumter will have the extra pressure of fighting very close to home. “The Fort”, However, was built for this very thing.

“Just seeing the support, all the people who have an interest in me – I’m relishing in the fact that I get to go out here and put on a show for them and all the people who really care about me.”

Don’t miss Justin Sumter facing Reginaldo Felix on the prelim portion of Bellator 216 this Saturday night.


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