The outcome of Bellator 244’s main card was hardly a surprise, right up until the main event. The favorites won, the odds proved accurate, the fights played out more or less as expected.
Then came the main event title fight between double-champ Ryan Bader and Russian challenger Vadim Nemkov, for Bader’s light heavyweight title. Nemkov was as legit an opponent as they come, having defeated the likes of Rafael Carvalho and Phil Davis to earn his title shot.
He also showed up with a smart game plan, taking the fight to Bader, forcing him to retreat. Bader, who tends to rely on forward pressure and his dominant wrestling, struggled to adjust. In the second round, he was hurt, later dropped with a head kick, and after an extended mauling, finished.
No longer a double champ, thanks to new Light Heavyweight champion Vadim Nemkov. While Nemkov was always a threat, the one-sided nature of the fight was something of a surprise. When Bader did take Nemkov down, he could not keep him there. On the feet, it wasn’t close.
Now, Russia has its first light heavyweight champion in a major MMA promotion. And Team Fedor has their revenge, with Nemkov doing what Fedor Emelianenko could not during the heavyweight grand prix.
Highlights of the Bellator 244 action can be found below!