In case you missed it, I already gave my prediction on the new main event for Bellator 192 which takes place this Saturday night live and free on the newly minted Paramount network (formerly Spike TV). The co-main event of the night features a welterweight title fight between Bellator MMA’s welterweight champion Dhiego Lima and former UFC fighter Rory MacDonald. I have been looking forward to this bout for quite some time. Lima versus MacDonald is my favorite title fight in the history of Bellator.
You have Lima, the fast dangerous counter striker against the always elusive and durable Rory MacDonald. This fight has all the makings of an absolute classic. For the sake of the promotion run by former Strikeforce President Scott Coker, I hope this is a fantastic fight for Bellator. I want Bellator to succeed because when they succeed the sport succeeds. Competition breeds success.
Lima and MacDonald should have shared the marquee as the main event but instead, Bellator MMA made a curious decision to move the fight to the co-main event slot. I don’t agree with that decision at all. More than enough people know who Rampage Jackson and Chael Sonnen are. They have crossed over to movies and reality television and have been two big names in the sport of MMA for over a decade. By making Lima and McDonald a co-main event it sells this title fight short. This is one of the most anticipated bouts of the year. Bellator’s biggest free agent acquisition from the UFC was Rory MacDonald. It’s not like Bellator would have a tough time reintroducing Rory to the casual fan base. He was one-half of one of the best fights in MMA history in his first and only UFC title shot against Robbie Lawler at UFC 189. If you haven’t seen that fight yet go on YouTube and find it.
The only reason why I feel they decided to make the switch could be because not many people know who the champion is. Even that’s the case, we live in a day and age where it is very easy to put some spotlight on an athlete. Bellator MMA has already mastered this with their web series “In Focus” and with the Bellator countdown show. If you didn’t know already, Bellator is owned by a multi-billion dollar company in Viacom. It feels like an absurd decision on their part but nonetheless, both fights will still take place.
And so, allow me to give my prediction on Lima vs MacDonald.
This fight can go a variety of ways and in my opinion, Rory MacDonald is the favorite to win this fight and he should be. Stylistically he is a tricky match for Lima and he has fought and beaten much better competition, including the current UFC welterweight champion Tyron Woodley. But as we all know this is Mixed Martial Arts. If Matt Serra can knockout Georges St.Pierre, if Michael Bisping can knockout Luke Rockhold, then anything can happen.
All in all, I do feel as if Lima is a great champion. He is so talented and throws great leg kicks and moves very fluidly, but I do think the big fight experience of MacDonald will be too much for Lima.
Prediction: MacDonald wins via submission in Round 3
Enjoy the fight everybody!