A seven-bout preliminary card for Bellator MMA’s first event of 2015, “Bellator: Pitbull vs. Straus,” is now official with the middleweights Dustin Jacoby (10-4) vs. John Salter (10-3), a 220-pound catchweight contest of Hector Carillo (5-6) vs. Everett Cummings (8-0), lightweights Steve Kozola (4-0) vs. Jonathan Rivera (4-0), lightweights Derek “The Barbaric” Anderson (11-1) vs. Danny Navarro (12-4), featherweights Fabricio Guerreiro (20-3) vs. Nick “No Limit” Piedmont (10-5-1), bantamweights Fabian Gonzalez (2-0) vs. Albert Morales (0-0), and middleweights Luc Bondole (4-0-1) vs. Chris “The Crusher” Herrera (2-1).
The seven new contests will serve as the Spike.com-streamed preliminary card of “Bellator: Pitbull vs. Straus,” which takes place Jan. 16 at Pechanga Resort & Casino in Temecula, Calif.
Doors for the event open at 3:30 p.m. PT, with the preliminary card starting 30 minutes later. The night’s four-fight maincard, headlined by Bellator MMA Featherweight World Champion Patricio Pitbull vs. former championDaniel Straus, airs on Spike TV at 9 p.m. ET.
Tickets for “Bellator: Pitbull vs. Straus,” which start at just $50, are currently on sale at the Pechanga Resort & Casinobox office or Pechanga.com.
“We are going to kick off our 2015 schedule with an absolutely incredible card,” Bellator MMA President Scott Coker said. “The four main fights we previously announced are outstanding, but now we’ve put together fantastic lineup that includes fight between Dustin Jacoby and John Salter, as well as the return of top prospects Fabricio Guerreiro andDerek Anderson, along with some of California’s top up-and-coming talent. I think this will be a very entertaining night of fights, from start to finish.”
Jacoby, of Denver, Colo., is a 26-year-old striking specialist who also competes as a professional kickboxer. Eight of his 10 mixed-martial-arts wins have come by way of knockout, and seven of those came in the first round. He now meets Salter, a grappling specialist who trains in Freso, Calif. In 13 career appearances, Salter has never gone to a judges’ decision.
Carillo, of Brawley, Calif., makes his Bellator MMA debut after a near-four-year break from competition. He finished his previous run with a mark of 3-1 in his final four bouts. He now meets the undefeated Cummings, of Corona, Calif. Cummings’ career mark is perfect after eight professional appearances, and he’s earned stoppages in seven of those fights, with five wins coming by submission and another two by knockout.
Kozola, of San Diego, Calif., turned pro in July 2013 and has earned four straight wins. His past two victories came in the first round, and all four wins have come by way of finish. He meets fellow undefeated prospect Rivera, of Lake Forest, Calif. Similar to his opponent, Rivera also has yet to go to a judges’ decision, earning stoppage wins in all four of his career contests.
Top prospect Anderson is a 24-year-old from San Diego, Calif. In previous Bellator MMA appearances, he earned victories over Brandon Girtz and Patricky Pitbull. He returns to action after a disappointing loss to fellow top up-and-comer Marcin Held in an April 2104 bout. He now faces Navarro, of Riverside, Calif. After opening his career with four straight losses, Navarro has since built an incredible 12-fight winning streak. His past five wins have all come in 94 seconds or less, including an eight-second TKO win in his most recent appearance.
Four-time Bellator MMA veteran Guerreiro, a 24-year-old Brazilian, competes for the first time since a May 2014 victory over former Bellator tournament winner Shahbulat Shamhalaev. Competing professionally since he was a teenager, Guerreiro is a judo black belt who currently lives and trains in California. He now faces Piedmont, an Arizona native who now trains with top camp Alliance MMA in San Diego, Calif. Piedmont is also a four-time Bellator MMA veteran who previously faced Matt Bessette, Cleber Luciano, Jade Porter and Michael Porter under the company’s banner.
Gonzalez, of San Diego, Calif., is unbeaten through his first two professional bouts, earning one victory by submission and another by decision. He now faces Morales, of Carson, Calif., who makes his professional debut.
The undefeated Bondole is a Kings MMA product who lives in Huntington Beach, Calif. He now faces Herrera, of Temecula, Calif. Both of Herrera’s wins to date have come by knockout.
Bellator 132: Friday, Jan. 16, Pechanga Casino Resort, Temecula, Calif..
Main Card (9 p.m. ET)
Bellator Featherweight Title Fight: Champ Patricio Pitbull (22-2) vs. Daniel Straus (23-5)
Featherweight Feature Fight: Bubba Jenkins (8-1) vs. Georgi Karakhanyan (23-4-1)
Light Heavyweight Feature Fight: Virgil Zwicker (12-4-1) vs. Houston Alexander (16-10-1)
Welterweight Feature Fight: Fernando Gonzalez (22-13) vs. Marius Zaromskis (20-8)
Preliminary Card (7 p.m. ET)
Middleweight Prelim Fight: Dustin Jacoby (10-4) vs. John Salter (10-3)
Catchweight (220 pounds) Prelim Fight: Everett Cummings (8-0) vs. Hector Carillo (5-6)
Welterweight Prelim Fight: Jonathan Rivera (4-0) vs.Steve Kozola (4-0)
Lightweight Prelim Fight: Derek Anderson (11-1) vs. Danny Navarro (12-4)
Featherweight Prelim Fight: Fabricio Guerreiro (20-3) vs. Nick Piedmont (10-5-1)
Bantamweight Prelim Fight: Fabian Gonzalez (2-0) vs. Albert Morales (0-0)
Middleweight Prelim Fight: Luc Bondole (4-0-1) vs. Chris Herrera (2-1)