Saturday, November 15, 2014

Bellator MMA 131 - Ortiz vs. Bonnar

The hype for Bonnar-Ortiz has just been wonderful.

"When I fight him, HE'S GOING TO SHIT HIMSELF!"

Bellator gets a brand-new intro full of clips that make every fighter on the show, beyond Bonnar, look like a world-beater. Wheelock's uneven hairline looks odd. This new stage setup however, looks fantastic. DREAM footage is used to hype up Melvin Manhoef. Mo-Vedepo opens the show. Vedepo is trying to cut an intimidating promo during the hype video, but it's too corny.

"Doctor" Joe Vedepo gets a titantron with flatlining, while he's got nurses and is dressed in scrubs. Mo gets his umbrella, bikini babes, and a ton of bling on his tron. These video screens are already a massive upgrade in presentation for the company and the lifting one, like TNA, adds a real major league look.

They start round 1 with a lot of grappling and Mo riding him on the ground. Mo is peppering in some punches, but Vedepo goes for an illegal upkick since Mo is on his knees. Ref warns, but he doesn't do anything beyond that and Mo doesn't seem to care. Mo's getting some shots in on the ground and his him bloody over the right eye. Nothing exciting, but it's not bad. Vedepo goes for a choke, but Mo slams him from it so the grip is largely done. I'll go with 10-8 since Vedepo did nothing. Vedepo dives in and fails to get a takedown. Mo is back to dominating. Vedepo is gassed and has nothing for him, plus his lip is busted. This is one of those fights you hope ends quickly because Mo's not looking great in this - like Lashley in his Bellator debut. More of the same. Ref demands some working. Mo stands up and then just goes right back down. Vedepo looks out on his back - just dazed. More striking on the ground, now against the cage. Vedepo came back with an okay elbow that did nothing. 10-8 for Mo. Round 3 starts with some strakes and Mo wins after some ground and pound on Vedepo's back and swims!

Mo thanked his crew and gave a shoutout to some ill folks he knows.  Bonnar looks 5 million years old in this "walks into the building" video. AND HE'S GOT THE MASKED GUY. Wheelock says he's hoping he brings Mr. Wrestling II out. Well, if he takes Tito out with a knee, we'll know why. Couture is shown in the crowd, while Bill Goldberg is shown...I think asking the security guy where his seat is.

Richman-Phan is hyped up reasonably well, and it's up next. Joe Warren's out and I think he stole one of Bruce Tharpe's suits. Phan's video is nice, while Richman is brought in with HELICOPTERS, BULLETS, AND AC/DC! Mike "The Marine" Richman comes out with a skull bandanna over his face! Maybe he'll join the Bullet Club - or revive the Aces and 8s.

They're standing and banging to start. Richman gets a good shot, rocks him, and it's over after some strikes on the ground. Fun fight beyond Joe Warren sounding touched in the head on commentary. Melvin Manhoef is sparring backstage and they put over him KOing Hunt - well, tonight's the night to put that over big-time.HUNT KO FOOTAGE! Oh man is that great. Comes off a bit bootleg with all the logo blurring, but damn is that just perfect timing. They hyped this up as an all-action war and damn did it rule.

Joe "Stitch 'em Up" Schilling is shown kicking fuckers while barb wire surrounds his name on the tron. Manhoef gets a swank rap song and is shown KOing dudes too. They plug his 17 second KO on Hunt as he walks out too. They exchange light shots until a cup shot to Manhoef. Manhoef recovers and takes him down. Beltran is tired of nothing happening and orders a standup. Some good striking here leads to Schilling getting a nice elbow from the left side for a round-ender. They start brawling and Manhoef leaves himself open and eats a KO punch! Beltran IMMEDIATELY hops on Melvin to prevent further damage.

Kyle Bolt vs. AJ Matthews is up from the prelim. They exchange shots and Matthews KOs him with a shot, but it isn't stopped until another one against the cage. Well, that was needless, but it was an example of Beltran giving him a chance to recover. Scott Coker is in the crowd with a skeleton shaped like Ken Shamrock to make an announcement next. In case you're just tuning in, they recap the entire show up to this point showcasing the new entrance setup and the finishes - excellent! Nope, it's a British Invasion stacked card on 2/27.

Chandler-Brooks gets a bit of hype and the title fight is up next, so the UFC veterans will headline. This is a bit iffy, but it is the billed main event, so I don't have much of a problem with it. A long hype video shows why the first Chandler-Brooks fight was so great. Chandler gets a simple tron and a nice relaxing theme. Brooks's tron focuses on the belt - love it. Not a ton going on beyond Chandler getting his back for a bit, but riding too high and getting shaken off. Chandler tries a takedown in round 2, but it fails. They plug Ink Master and each commentator talks about their tattoos. Knee to the cup from Chandler sends Brooks down hard and he keeps attacking. Just a nasty ball shot there.

Big wacky kick from Brooks misses and they're brawling. Chandler goes for a standing choke, but can't get it. Now he's out of it and eating shots - covered in blood as a result. They do a ton of grappling and Brooks gets the back, but slides off. Ref warns Chandler to let go of the cage. Chandler gets some nice punches against the cage, but nothing seems to be doing much damage. Brooks gets his back Brooks has this round and the third won, while I'd give Chandler the first two. Chandler's got a nasty cut building up under his right eye. Brooks gets some shots in the cage AND IT'S OVER! Chandler is crazy pissed. Ref says it's due to him stopping and turning away. Replay shows him clearly waving the fight off after a sick right and eating a few more out on his feet. Replay made it very clear that was not only a good stoppage, but if anything, a bit late since he took some nasty shots in slow-mo. At least he went against the padded part of the cage for one of them. Brooks wins the title officially here and is no longer just the interim champion! Brooks apologizes for attacking when he was out, but he didn't now. He wants to be a face of the company.

A little Tito-Bonnar hype sets up the main event. The McCully angle is recapped. The masked man this week doesn't have a double mask. Tito actually came off like the face in all this - it's amazing. OH MY GOD THE BONNARTRON! He looks like a nut and he's got this generic thrashcore band playing him. Tito's intro was exactly what it was on TMZ, with a sweet flag and flame getup. Bonnar looks at least a decade older than he is. His face is sagging as is his chest. Tito does the jumping splits, so hopefully he didn't tear every muscle in his spine. BELTRAN IS SERIOUS! VERY WELL! Bonnar throws some shots but slips. Tito can't quite take him down. They come back up and Tito takes him down. Bonnar is PULLING THE TIGHTS ref! They're exchanging knees to the gut against the cage. Tito's back is cut up against the cage and Tito goes for a takedown. Gets it sorta, but Bonnar's hit in the cup. Bonnar gets a punch combo, but there's nothing behind them. Jimmy notes that Tito isn't moving his head to evade, but he probably can't due to the fusion. They're basically having the exact same fight I had in UFC Undisputed 2010 - lots of punches, hook attempts, takedowns, and a bit of blood.

Bonnar comes out swinging in round 2. Tito goes for a takedown, but Bonnar spins out to avoid it. Bonnar dives in, but Tito gets a front choke attempt. Bonnar gets some punches and stumbles. He looks like he has nothing left in the tank right now. MASSIVE Tito chant. If he wins, book him for a title fight. The left side of Bonnar's face is covered in a crimson mask, and he's getting some shots, but nothing big. EXCELLENT left hits, but Tito's still up. Lots of punches. Tito gets a takedown and gets his hooks in on the back. Bonnar's nose is busted up and we'll go to a third round. I'd give Tito the win so far 10-9. Bonnar's face is all sliced up, so Tito accomplished his goal there. Bonnar avoids a takedown kinda by just blocking the full descent to the mat. Tito trips him down. Bonnar has absolutely nothing left. Bonnar's arms are down - he's out of it.

They're just exchanging single punches here. Neither has much, but Tito gets him down. Each guy is absorbing a ton of shots, which isn't good at this stage in the game for either. Bonnar eats a lot of shots at the end. He was basically Homer against Tatum here. We're waiting for a decision and Stephan says he's coming home to his kids, so he's definitely done here. HUGE Tito chant. Bonnar has a vagina under his right eye now. Tito wins and they recap the whole show with nice B-roll footage we haven't seen yet. They plugged the first two shows of 2015, focusing on the Feb. show. Bellator needed a home run and beyond Mo's fight, they got it.


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