Awad vs. Girtz in the main event of Bellator 219 was everything fans had hoped it would be. And then some, as the two absolutely let loose for three full rounds.
Heading into Bellator 219 Friday night in Temecula, CA, the main event could be summed up in one word: explosive. Saad Awad and Brandon Girtz were two fighters with plenty of mutual respect between them. Yet neither was expected to back down when they met in the cage on Friday. Whether someone would walk away with the finish was the question. Both fighters told Cageside Press ahead of the fight that they were most certainly looking for it.
After the glove touch, the pair faced off at center, neither wanting to step back. Awad did, when Girtz closed the distance launching overhands. But Awad came right back on the attack. Then it was Girtz’s turn, and this time, he connected. Awad was under fire, eating some heavy blows! Soon Saad Awad was down, and Brandon Girtz was on top. He tried to step over, but Awad managed to scramble free. Next it was Awad’s turn to go on the attack. Girtz covered up, backed up for a moment, then came storming back, swinging again! The fight wasn’t half over, and it was already crazy.
Of course, that pace was going to be hard to keep up. Awad mixed things up with some kicks, then lunged forward again, but missed. Girtz’s heavy overhands were still lightning quick, but he was hitting air. Awad continued to attack with kicks, and added a jumping knee before the round came to a close, and a final front kick.
Both men were battered, but still standing. Round two saw Awad backing Girtz up with his kicks once again. While Girtz had the edge in power, Awad was the more versatile fighter. Yet it was Girtz wobbling Awad again in the second, only for him to scramble away from harm. Another big right hand landed for Girtz moments later, and Awad turned and escaped. He came back, landing a jab in an exchange. Girtz continued to swing away. Awad fired a knee, ate a punch, and it was pandemonium once again.
Later in the round, Girtz went to the body with a kick. Awad was still keeping him on the outside as best he could. Another exchange with less than thirty seconds to go in the round saw both men land, and they’d head to a third.
— Bellator MMA (@BellatorMMA) March 30, 2019
The third and final round of the Bellator 219 main event had Awad and Girtz continue to trade, continue to stand toe-to-toe. However, at the mid-way mark, Awad shot for a leg, only to wind up covering up as Girtz rained down hard punches. The ref was right on it, but warning Girtz for hitting the back of the head, he missed Girtz holding the shorts, for an extended amount of time. That allowed him to better control Awad, but Awad survived, and made it back to his feet. Awad then raised his arms, gesturing Girtz to keep bringing it in a fight where both men had done just that! Awad rocked Girtz in the final seconds with some stand and bang, but they went to the bell!
No losers in that one — a fantastic end to the night at Bellator 219.
Brandon Girtz def. Saad Awad by unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 29-28)