Ryan Bader got his revenge, and got a spot in the light heavyweight grand prix semifinals on Friday.
That’s the biggest news coming out of Bellator 256. Bader, the promotion’s current heavyweight champ and former light heavyweight champion, defeated Lyoto Machida in dominant fashion in a rematch nine years after their original meeting in the UFC. While Bader was stopped by Machida in that first encounter, aside from eating an early head kick Friday, he mostly man-handled Machida, falling back on his wrestling and dropping some nasty elbows.
The fight, which headlined the Bellator 256 card, kicked off the promotion’s light heavyweight grand prix. Which looked, frankly, stacked. Names like Corey Anderson, Phil Davis, Yoel Romero, Anthony “Rumble” Johnson, and of course Vadim Nemkov (who defeated Bader for the title) will compete in the coming weeks.
Also at Bellator 256, Diana Avsaragova announced her arrival in style, while Cat Zingano and perhaps Liz Carmouche staked claims to title shots in their respective divisions.
Full results and a gallery of highlights are available below!
Bellator 256: Bader vs. Machida 2 Results
Ryan Bader def. Lyoto Machida by unanimous decision (49-46, 49-45, 49-45) – Bellator light heavyweight grand prix quarterfinal
Liz Carmouche def. Vanessa Porto by unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)
Adam Borics def. Adam Borics by unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)
Cat Zingano def. Olivia Parker by submission (arm-bar), Round 1, 2:56
Dan Moret def. Goiti Yamauchi by split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
Dalton Rosta def. Tony Johnson by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Talita Nogueira def. Jessica Borga by unanimous decision (29-27, 29-27, 29-27)
Jornel Lugo def. Cass Bell by unanimous decision (30-26, 30-27, 30-27)
Cody Law def. Nathan Ghareeb (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Jaylon Bates def. Jeffrey Glossner submission (guillotine), Round 2, 1:27
Nainoa Dung def. Izzy William by unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)
Diana Avsaragova def. Tara Graff by knockout, Round 1, 0:29
John Douma def. Will Smith by unanimous decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)