Middleweight, Johnny Eblen (6-0)
Another fighter in Bellator with a wrestling pedigree, Eblen got it solely done on the mat. Outside a couple of right hands, Eblen just waited for his shots and was 100% on his takedowns (4). Mauricio Alonso was a guy that finished the well known Josh Koscheck in his prior fight but Eblen dominated Alonso. Eblen never attempted to pass the guard but would just posture up briefly and land big ground and pound. He threw elbows, punches, and hammer fists mixing it up.
Featherweight, Jay Jay Wilson (4-0)
Prior to this fight, Wilson didn’t show much with three quick finishes in round one. This one was no different as Wilson breezed past his adversary in Jorge Juarez. Wilson quickly closed the distance and got the fight to the mat. Right into the mount. As Juarez tried to explode Wilson took the back effortlessly. The native New Zealand used the kimura attempt to sink in the RNC for the finish. Beautiful jiu-jitsu.
Bantamweight, Sharapudin Magomedov (2-0)
The Russian is only 2-0 as a pro but has some good experience as he had a 15-1 amateur record. Magomedov looked solid in this fight dominating a more experienced pro fighter in Madiyar Zhorobekov. Magomedov dominated with his ground game but in round one he did score a knockdown with a short right. After getting the knockdown he stayed on top and beat Madiyar up with ground and pound. Magomedov followed that route into round two getting a quick takedown. Really good IQ and dominant in all positions getting the mount and the back. Raining ground and pound with elbows the ref would eventually step in.
Flyweight, Liliya Shakirova (8-1)
Shakirova got it done on the mat but was impressive on the feet as well. She had really good movement sticking with kicks and circling out. Shakirova found home with her overhand-right even dropping her opponent briefly in round one. Shakirova had a takedown in both round one and two and both where emphatic dumping her foe to the mat. On top, her ground and pound was relentless going to the body-head often. Her opponent had no answer and many shots later the ref stepped in.
Lightweight, Anvar Chergesov (10-4)
Chergesov dominated this fight solely with his wrestling. From the start of the first round, Chergesov was all over opponent Trunov. Securing seven takedowns in the first round, Chergesov once he had his hands clasped constantly dumped Trunov to the mat. In round 2, one more takedown came for his total to come to eight takedowns. Once that takedown happened Chergesov while controlling the back locked in a rare bulldog choke and Trunov tapped.
Bantamweight, Chase Boutwell (2-0)
Boutwell impresses again, this being his second time aking this list (August). In the opening seconds, Boutwell hit a poule double leg takedown. Using that superior jiu-jitsu, Boutwell quickly took the back. He tied opponent Mullin up behind his back with his leg to sink in the RNC. Once he got both his hooks in the choke became tighter and Mullin tapped.
Lightweight, Kayla Harrison (6-0)
Harrison did her usual thing and steamrolled her opponent. This time being Bobbi-Jo Dalziel, a short-notice replacement. Harrison scored her fourth first-round finish. Harrison quickly closed the distance and scored the takedown from the body lock to an outside trip. As soon as she got mount the punches came to set up the armbar finish.
Welterweight, Ray Cooper lll (19-7)
Fighting a good fighter in Chris Curtis, Cooper made in look easy. In round one, he dominated with his wrestling getting two takedowns. As he continues to evolve he was able to control Curtis on the mat the entire round. The second round was much different as eleven seconds in, Cooper landed a monster right knocking Curtis out cold. This would be the first time Curtis has ever been knocked out.
Welterweight, Oban Elliott (3-0)
With a late opponent change, the Welshman was still able to get it done. Elliott was not fighting a great opponent in James Lilley but still someone who had way more combat experience. Elliott opened up aggressive with two well-executed body lock takedowns. While controlling the back Elliott was landing some huge right hands before taking the mount. Quickly getting the back, Elliott would finish with the RNC.
Lightweight, Mason Jones (8-0)
Aleksi Mäntykivi is a good fighter who is a solid test for anyone, even beating Soren Bak. Jones though dominated Mäntykivi en-route to a unanimous decision. Jones is the type of fighter who will take one to give some and that’s why his face was leaking blood. Jones was the one in control landing good combinations to the head-body-head. Also mixing in kicks really showing a good arsenal from Jones. The story of the fight was the multiple takedowns from Jones and to work on top. Jones went for a few submissions including a deep kimura in round one. He also went for an inverted triangle, RNC, and a Von-Flue choke. Aleksi was tough but the work ethic of Jones was too much.
Featherweight, Saba Bolaghi (11-1-1)
Now on a 5-fight win streak, Bolaghi after coming up short in 2016 to capture the GMC title did claim it in this fight. Bolaghi while not showing really anything at all on the feet, dominated with his wrestling. In a five-round fight, the German won each round getting the takedown each round. Around ten overall. Bolaghi at times shot from too far out but made up for it with his chain wrestling and speed. On top, he was solid in scrambles and was always in control.