Five Thoughts on Bellator 100 – Looking at War Machine’s Win, Lima’s KO, Jenkins’ Loss and More

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Another Bellator card is in the books and while waiting for UFC 165 to start this morning I watched the card on DVR. You can find our quick results here, if you want to see who won and lost.

5. Bubba Jenkins loses for the first time via TKO against a massive underdog

Bubba Jenkins was one of the best prospects in MMA when he was signed to Bellator. A lot of people questioned his decision at the time, mainly because there was a feeling he was UFC bound in a year (and 4-5 fights) later. Bellator made the wise decision to bring him along slowly and let him develop; tonight was a big set back as he gassed late and LaRue Burley took advantage. It was a bad performance from Jenkins, as Burley was reversing him from bottom and out striking him. It’s back to the drawing board for the prospect; sometimes it isn’t your night and this was it, profoundly. Nothing seemed to click and his next fight will show us a lot about his ceiling.

4. War Machine gets the professional win

The man known as Christy Mack’s boyfriend, and formerly as Jonathan Koppenhaver, took on a respectable Vaughn Anderson and took a good win out of the process. WM still looks like he needs a ton of work to do in the cage but one can see why Bellator has high hopes for him. He has a great look and if he wins a title he’ll probably have the most famous girlfriend of any fighter in MMA with a championship belt.

Though it’s interesting how Bellator really wants to promote Mack and Machine as a couple without actually saying she’s a porn star. It’s something that bugs me; it’s one thing for Jimmy Smith to talk about how he clears his browser every time he views Mack and she’s always listed as either War Machine’s girlfriend or as an actress. So it’s kind of creepy that Smith talks about clearing his browser, et al, but without ever mentioning what her profession entails. It kind of sounds creepy if you don’t know the back story to it. Smith is a great announcer but it sounds like he’s Googling her to “handle himself” like he’s in Don Jon instead of just alluding to the fact that Mack has sex for a living.

3. Bellator’s non televised fights may be more exciting … but sometimes it’s because it’s awful MMA.

Mighty Mo has been on a substantial skid in kickboxing, where he normally plies his trade, and on a two fight losing streak in MMA. Seeing him in Bellator wasn’t a shocker; he’s too old and not that good at MMA. But heavyweights in MMA, especially those with some name, are in short supply and with nearly every other 265 pound fighter of note signed elsewhere he’s not the worst possible name to have on an undercard. I’m not shocked Tim Sylvia hasn’t found his way there yet. Mo vs. Dan Charles was Bellator’s equivalent of Soa Palelei vs. Nikita Krylov for 2013.

2. Bellator’s welterweight division needs an answer to the Ben Askren question

Bellator’s champion is a free agent and hasn’t signed with anyone or anywhere yet to fight MMA next. His next competition is going to be in Agon Wrestling Championships, the amateur wrestling version of Metamoris, and he’s given no sign that he’ll be fighting in MMA soon. Bellator needs to move on and strip him of the title, or back up the money truck and pay the man, for the sake of its own best interests. Lima lost profoundly to Askren but that was a couple years ago; Lima looked great against Saunders and that head kick knockout could be great for promotion. Lima has improved but so has Askren, et al.

1. Douglas Lima may have had the KO of the year … that no one saw

It’s in the highlight reel released by Bellator on YouTube:

It was a great body shot then head kick combo, and Lima looked great in the fight. If that knockout isn’t among your top five for 2013 then you need to check yourself.