Bellator 290 Preliminary Card Fills Out with Four Fights Added

Steve Mowry Bellator 257
Steve Mowry vs Shaun Asher, Bellator 257 Credit: Bellator MMA

Next month’s Bellator 290 sees a pair of title fights usher in 2023 for the promotion, and the event’s undercard has now been completed.

On Friday, promotion officials announced the full preliminary card for the California-based event, which takes place February 4, 2023 at the Kia Forum in Inglewood, CA.

In one new addition, heavyweight Steve Mowry (10-0, 1 NC) has been paired up with 2008 men’s freestyle Olympian Ali Isaev (9-0) in the latter’s promotional debut. Isaev won the PFL’s 2019 heavyweight tournament, defeating UFC alum Jared Rosholt in the final — but has not competed since.

After fighting to a No Contest last July, #8-ranked middleweight Lorenz Larkin (24-7, 2 NC) will rematch Russia’s Mukhamed Berkhamov (15-1, 1 NC) in a welterweight match-up. The remaining newly announced prelim fights see former bantamweight champ Darrion Caldwell (14-6, 1 NC) take on Nikita Mikhailov (9-2), while featherweights Isaiah “The Central Valley Gangster” Hokit (2-1) and Peter Ishiguro (2-1) collide.

Bellator 290 is headlined by what is expected to be the retirement fight of legendary heavyweight Fedor Emelianenko, who will rematch Ryan Bader in a bid to claim Bellator’s heavyweight title.

In the co-main event, Johnny Eblen puts his title on the line against Anatoly Tokov. A previously announced bout that would have seen Vadlim Nemkov put his light heavyweight title up against Yoel Romero is off the card, after Nemkov was forced to withdraw from the bout.

The following match-ups have been officially announced for the Bellator 290:

  • Ryan Bader (c) vs. Fedor Emelianenko – for the Bellator MMA heavyweight championship
  • Johnny Eblen (c) vs. Anatoly Tokov – for the Bellator MMA middleweight championship
  • Sabah Homasi vs. Brennan Ward
  • Neiman Gracie vs. Michael Lombardo
  • Lorenz Larkin vs. Mukhamed Berkhamov
  • Henry Corrales vs. Akhmed Magomedov
  • Steve Mowry vs. Ali Isaev
  • Chris Gonzalez vs. Max Rohskopf
  • Grant Neal vs. Karl Albrektsson
  • Alejandra Lara vs. Diana Avsaragova
  • Darrion Caldwell vs. Nikita Mikhailov
  • Jaylon Bates vs. Jornel Lugo
  • Isaiah Hokit vs. Peter Ishiguro
  • Ethan Hughes vs. Yusuf Karakaya