Raufeon Stots added another win to his resume in his promotional debut at Bellator 236, utilizing his wrestling to get past Hawaii’s Cheyden Leialoha.
Raufeon Stots is a very promising prospect who elected to sign with Bellator rather than shoot for the UFC. Stots trains under Duke Roufus and is 12-1 with wins over longtime veterans Jeff Curran and Rob Emerson. He is on a four-fight win streak with three of those in LFA since losing to current UFC fighter Merab Dvalishvili.
Cheyden Leialoha started his career with six straight wins and four finishes to earn a spot on the Contender Series in 2017. He suffered his first career loss in front of Dana White, but bounced back in April 2018 with a rear-naked choke, having not fought since.
Cheyden Leialoha landed a body kick right away, but Stots caught it and pushed him to the fence. They spun back and forth for position until Stots fought for a double leg and got it. Leialoha stood up quickly and returned to the center of the cage. Leialoha began whipping kicks at Stots, then went for a takedown. Stots reversed the takedown attempt and ended up in half guard on top. With little time left, Stots transitioned to side control.
Both fighters threw high kicks to start the second round, then another came from Leialoha. Stots returned with one of his own, but nothing of significance was landing yet. Leialoha dove for a takedown and got Stots down. He transitioned for a kimura, but ended up on his back. Stots was working from full guard and Leialoha was neutralizing any advances. Eventually, Stots stood up to create a different angle, but couldn’t generate offense.
Leialoha initiated a clinch, then landed an elbow on the break to start the final round. Stots threw a knee then shot for a takedown and got it. Stots got in top position and was able to get side control then the back with little time left. Leialoha bucked him off and both men threw flying knees followed by a flurry to close out the contest.
Raufeon Stots def. Cheyden Leialoha by Unanimous Decision (30-27 x2, 29-28)