With Bellator 263 in the books, Bellator fans finally got to see the biggest fight in Bellator MMA history as Patricio Freire (Pitbull) and AJ Mckee as the two fighters locked horns in the cage with the featherweight title and a $1 million prize on the line. They were the last two standing from the 16-man tournament that began back in 2019.
The fight took forever to come to fruition as this was similar to the Tony Ferguson vs Khabib Nurmagomedov hype that was going on for years. That fight never happened but the Pitbull vs McKee fight did. This fight was a Pick’em as Pitbull was seen as the greatest fighter of all time for Bellator, while McKee was an upcoming star who put his undefeated record on the line.
McKee was able to put away Pitbull in short order with a technical submission via Guillotine Choke in the very first round. With this fight, McKee improved to 18-0 and was crowned the new king of the division.
Now we shift to Bellator 264 with the middleweight title on the line featuring the challenger John Salter vs the champ Gegard Mousasi. With no UFC this week, MMA fans will certainly tune in on Friday.
John Salter Bellator 264 Preview
Before Gegard Mousasi joined Bellator after leaving the UFC, John Salter (18-4-0) who is the #1 contender in the middleweight division made his debut in Bellator 132 against Dustin Jacoby with a submission in round two via Rear-Naked Choke. Since then, he has been a big name in the company, ending fights early against Brandon Halsey, Claudio Annicchiarico, Kendall Grove, Jason Radcliffe, Chidi Njokuani, and Andrew Kapel.
6️⃣ year Bellator veteran @JohnSalter_MMA finally gets his crack at gold!
— BellatorMMA (@BellatorMMA) August 10, 2021
He also has a unanimous decision victory over Costello van Steenis. His only defeat came in Bellator 205 against Rafael Lovato Jr. which ended in a Rear-Naked Choke. However, he is currently on a three-fight win streak as he faces Mousasi on Friday.
Gegard Mousasi Bellator 264 Preview
Gegard Mousasi (47-7-2) joined Bellator back in October 2017 after defeating Chris Weidman earlier that year in the UFC. His only loss since joining Bellator was also to Rafael Lovato Jr. who won a majority decision. In his five wins since leaving the UFC, he has won three fights by decision and two fights by TKO.
However, there is one glaring difference between these two fighters as he reclaimed his title against then welterweight Douglas Lima after losing it to Rafael Lovato Jr. in a surprising upset. Both fighters are currently 36 years old and have been a force in the division.
However, Mousasi has a lot more fighting experience on his resume with 34 more bouts in his professional career. He has also fought some great fighters in both the UFC and kickboxing.
Final Thoughts on Bellator 264 Picks
There is no question that both fighters have succeeded at a high level in their respective MMA careers thus far. However, it is just hard to deny that Mousasi has fought the better fighters when comparing both fighters in terms of competition.
Salter may have a wrestling background which he can use to take down his opponent. However, Mousasi has a background in Judo which could be another factor where Salter doesn’t have a huge advantage. I see this five-round bout being a one-sided victory for Mousasi.
Prediction: Gegard Mousasi via decision odds N/A at the moment
No worries, we’re bound to get the odds pretty soon, so make sure you stay tuned!