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New England MMA Stepping Out to Los Angeles For Bellator 290

Updated: Jan 26, 2023

New England MMA is excited to announce that we will be headed out to Inglewood, CA for Bellator 290. This card is absolutely stacked from top to bottom and will absolutely throw down at The Kia Forum come February 4th. New England MMA will be in attendance for media activities throughout the week including press conferences, interviews, and of course LIVE play-by-play and results come fight night.

This very exciting card is full of great, professional talent. Some familiar names may include:

  • Neiman Gracie (11-4, member of the Renzo Gracie family and Jiu Jitsu Academy)

  • Lorenz Larkin (24-7,former UFC fighter and current #8 Bellator Middleweight)

  • Darrion Caldwell (14-6,former Bellator Bantamweight title contender)

  • Steve Mowry (10-0,#5 Bellator Heavyweight), Ali Isaev (2019 PFL Heavyweight Champion)

  • Jornel Lugo (8-1, Former CES MMA fighter)

  • The matchup between Grant Neal (7-1, #6 Bellator Light Heavyweight) and Karl Albrektsson (13-4, T-9 Bellator Light Heavyweight)

  • Amongst other great fighters on this talent and action-packed card.

On top of these fighters, New England's own Brennan "Irish" Ward (16-6) will take on #8 Bellator Welterweight, Sabah Homasi (17-10). Ward has had two amazing KO finishes since his Bellator return in February of 2022. In his return, he finished Brandon Bell (10-10) via punches in front of his hometown crowd at Mohegan Sun in Uncasville, CT. In this next fight after, Ward finished Kassius Kayne at the Mohegan Sun once again, by standing TKO. Ward has proven that he his still as dangerous as can be and the matchup with Homasi come Saturday night couldn't be much better as both men love to stand and bang.

The co-main event between Middleweight Champion Johnny Eblen (12-0) and #3 Contender Anatoly Tokov (31-2) is certainly going to be a banger as well. Eblen, who trains at American Top Team in Coconut Creek, FL is currently undefeated at 12-0 and has been through some tough tests along the way including decision wins over John Salter and Gegard Mousasi. These are two MMA vets with lots of fights behind them and Eblen cruised past them in his tear through the Middleweight division. He takes on Team Fedor's Anatoly Tokov for the title. Tokov is a veteran of 33 professional fights and has been training under the legend, Fedor Emelianenko in Russia. Tokov has recent wins over Muhammad Abdullah (11-5) and Sharaf Davlatmurodov (18-3-1). The clash between these two is certainly going to be great as both men are violent on the feet but can also wrestle very effectively. Eblen was a member of the University Of Missouri Wrestling Team and has plenty of comfort on the ground just like Tokov. This matchup is perfect for the Middleweight Championship!

Next, the main event features the retirement fight of the MMA Legend and #3 Bellator Heavyweight contender himself, Fedor Emelianenko as he takes on the current Bellator Heavyweight Champion in Ryan Bader. Fedor has been fighting in this sport since the early Pride days and holds a professional record of 40-6. He has been in some of the greatest fights in history. He has fought for promotions like Ring, Strikeforce, Pride, Bellator, but never the UFC which was one of his biggest opportunities. Many remember Fedor for his powerful surge through the heavyweight division of many promotions and question why he never joined the UFC. In interviews in the past, Fedor is known to have explained that the UFC contract was just too much of a obligation and was too "enslaving" as he explained it. Many fans are very excited to celebrate the retirement fight of who many consider the Greatest Heavyweight of All-Time, his opponent, Ryan Bader (30-7) is no stranger to the MMA community either as Bader has established himself in the Bellator Heavyweight Division but also the Light Heavyweight Division. Bader had a long career with the UFC as well. Ryan Bader has at one point held both Bellator belts at once before he was beaten for his Light Heavyweight title by Vadim Nemkov in 2020. Although he may not be the current champion, he is still ranked #3 in that Light Heavyweight division. This card is stacked from top to bottom and New England MMA is looking forward to bringing you coverage from Inglewood, CA.

The full fight card is as follows:

Bellator 290 Main Card:

Ryan Bader (31-7) vs. Fedor Emelianenko (40-6), Heavyweight

Champion Johnny Eblen (12-0) vs Anatoly Tokov (31-3), Middleweight Sabah Homasi (17-10) vs. Brennan Ward (16-6), Welterweight

Bellator 290 Prelims:

Neiman Gracie (11-4) vs. Dante Schiro (9-4), Welterweight Ethan Hughes (3-0) vs. Yusuf Karakaya (1-0), Welterweight Grant Neal (6-1) vs. Karl Albrektsson (13-4), Light Heavyweight Chris Gonzalez (7-2) vs. Max Rohskopf (7-1), Lightweight Jornel Lugo (8-1) vs. Jaylon Bates (6-0), Bantamweight

Alejandra Lara (9-6) vs. Diana Avsaragova (5-0), Womens Flyweight Lorenz Larkin (24-7) vs. Mukhamed Berkhamov (15-1), Welterweight

Henry Corrales (20-6) vs. Akhmedov Magomedov (15-1), Featherweight Steve Mowry (10-0) vs. Ali Isaev (9-0), Heavyweight Isaiah Hokit (2-1) vs. Peter Ishiguro (2-1), Featherweight

Darrion Caldwell (15-5) vs. Nikita Mikhailov (9-2), Bantamweight

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