Bellator 257 has come and gone, and two more fighters have moved on to the light heavyweight grand prix semifinals.
Corey Anderson made a statement against Dovletdzhan Yagshimuradov, earning a third-round TKO stoppage. And 205lb champ Vadim Nemkov retained his title, going the distance against Phil Davis, a rematch of their 2018 meeting.
“The tournament fights were amazing tonight. Overall, we just had a fantastic card. I think this is the best card out of the three [Bellator has held so far this year],” Bellator CEO Scott Coker stated following Friday night’s event.
Anderson now moves on to meet Ryan Bader in the tournament semifinals. Nemkov, looking a bit worse for the wear after five hard rounds with Davis, awaits the winner of Anthony Johnson vs. Yoel Romero.
One bit of news that came out Friday is that Julius Angelickas will serve as a tournament alternate. Angelickas picked up his own win at Bellator 257, but Coker is hoping that his services, or that of any other potential alternate, will not be required.
“Our goal is to keep this tournament intact. Because of just the star power that it has,” Coker told Cageside Press on Friday. “If we have to wait a month or two or six weeks, we’re going to wait for the competitors to get ready. If we have an injury we’re going to be flexible.”
According to Coker, “things seem to be going along in a good fashion. No one’s gotten seriously hurt. Bader is good, I believe that Corey is good. Nemkov is a little banged up, but by the time he fights again, he’ll be good,” the promoter stated. “And then we’ll see what happens on May 7, between the Rumble fight with Yoel Romero. If they don’t get any injuries in May, this fight could happen as early as July, the semifinals. Or it could be August, depending on how everyone is feeling. We’re going to knock this out by the end of the year.”
Watch the full Bellator 257 post-fight press conference with Scott Coker above.