Fight Facts: Bellator 243
Fight Facts is a breakdown of all of the interesting information and cage curiosities on every card, with some puns, references and portmanteaus to keep things fun. These deep stat dives delve into the numbers, providing historical context and telling the stories behind those numbers.
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TOTAL NUMBER OF BELLATOR FIGHTS: 2,700
TOTAL NUMBER OF BELLATOR EVENTS: 245
Bellator MMA stayed firmly planted in the Mohegan Sun Arena in Connecticut with a more substantial card than their return with Bellator 243. The event featured a potential free agent placed atop most of the Bellator record books, a trio of fighters that stayed perfect at night’s end and a rare stoppage due to leg kicks.
AH, TO BE YOUNG: Three fighters – Valerie Loureda, Grant Neal and Dalton Rosta – all came in to Bellator 243 with undefeated records. All three escaped with their unbeaten records intact.
IRON SHARPENS CHANDLER: With his first-round stoppage of Benson Henderson, Michael Chandler moved into a tie for the most wins in Bellator history with Patricio Freire. They have each won 18 times under the Bellator banner.
BELLATOR BORNE: Chandler’s appearance was his 23rd on the Bellator roster, and he joins former foe David Rickels atop the list for the most Bellator fights.
MESS WITH THE BULL: “Iron Mike” increased his lead for the most stoppage victories in organizational history by knocking out Henderson. His 13 finishes stand above A.J. McKee and Freire, each of whom hold 11.
YOU GET THE HORNS: The knockout was Chandler’s seventh inside the Bellator cage, lifting him into in a tie for the fourth-most in promotional history along with Andrey Koreshkov, Hector Lombard and Freire. Only Douglas Lima, Michael Page and Patricky Freire hold more, with nine each.
A PRESSURE CHEF: Headlining the card against Henderson in their rematch, Chandler picked up his ninth Bellator win as the top-billed fighter. This win also ties him with Freire for the most main event wins in company history.
BEFORE THE MTV2 ERA: Chandler made his promotional debut at Bellator 31 in September 2010, and amassed the most fights in Bellator history along the way. Despite this achievement, he is not the longest tenured Bellator fighter that competed on the card – this honor goes to Georgi Karakhanyan, who first appeared at Bellator 13 earlier that year.
LEFT NO DOUBT: In victory, Chandler became the second man to finish the durable Henderson with strikes, and the first to do so uncontroversially. The first such stoppage for Henderson came six years ago at UFC Fight Night 49 against Rafael dos Anjos, and some considered the stoppage premature.
A REGULAR FIGUEIREDO-BENAVIDEZ: Although potentially aided by an inadvertent clash of heads, Timothy Johnson recorded his first consecutive win in major competition by knocking out Matt Mitrione. Across the Xtreme Couture product’s 14 career wins, 11 have come within two rounds.
MASK OF SANITY IS ABOUT TO SLIP: Karakhanyan suffered his ninth defeat as a Bellator fighter by dropping a decision to Myles Jury, placing “Insane Georgi” one shy of the all-time Bellator record for losses. Saad Awad stands alone with 10.
BUZZER BEATING: Loureda sparked Tara Graff at the end of the second round to record the stoppage at the 5:00 mark. Her stoppage is the fourth in organizational history to occur at exactly 5:00 of the round and not officially between rounds, and the first for a female fighter.
RAISING VALERIE: The finish a clean knockout, Loureda earned the fifth by KO in Bellator women’s divisional history. Three of those five have now taken place at flyweight.
LIGHT LEGS: Charlie Campbell chopped down Nainoa Dung to earn a leg kick stoppage in the second frame. With the win, Campbell is the sixth Bellator fighter to end a fight with leg kicks.
HACK AND SLASH: Early into his career, Rosta advanced his spotless record to 3-0 by forcing the doctor to intervene for Mark Gardner at the end of the first round. “Hercules” has won all three of his bouts by technical knockout.
NEVER SAY NEVER AGAIN: Coming into Bellator 243, Mike Hamel had never lost on the scorecards (10 fights), Dung had never been finished (four fights) and no lightweight had ever won a fight via leg kicks (Campbell).