When Brennan Ward (14-6) steps into the cage at Bellator 274 next month, it will be his first fight in over four years.
Ward’s return will come against Brandon Bell (10-10), and marks the end of a harrowing journey of drug use, partying, concussions, and eventually, personal growth that was recently detailed in an excellent piece by MMA Junkie.
Bellator officials announced Ward’s return in a press release Thursday.
Having last competed in 2017, in a loss to Fernando Gonzalez, Ward will be looking to snap a two-fight losing streak in his return. The former title challenger and Bellator Season 9 tournament winner’s last win came in 2016, when he knocked out Saad Awad.
Ward’s addition is one of several Bellator officials either announced or confirmed on Thursday. In addition to a previously reported match-up between Justine Kish and DeAnna Bennett, the Bellator 274 card will also play host to returning light heavyweight Christian Edwards (5-1), who will face the debuting Kevin Haley (5-5). A Jackson-Wink MMA fighter and training partner (well, now formerly) of Jon Jones, Edwards was defeated for the first time in his last outing, by Ben “Big Tuna” Parrish.
Bellator 274 is set to take place on February 19, 2022 at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, CT. The following bouts have been officially announced for the event:
Neiman Gracie vs. Logan Storley
Andrey Koreshkov vs. Mukhamed Berkamov
Georgi Karakhanyan vs. Adam Piccolotti
Davion Franklin vs. Said Sowma
Mandel Nallo vs. Nick Browne
Christian Edwards vs. Kevin Haley
Jaylon Bates vs. Chris Disonell
Aviv Gozali vs. Bobby King
DeAnna Bennett vs. Justine Kish
Brennan Ward vs. Brandon Bell
Jordan Newman vs. Cody Herbert
Justin Montalvo vs. Corey Samuels
Isaiah Hokit vs. Theodore Macuka
Orlando Mendoza vs. Jonathan Di Lorenzo