A landmark event for both mixed martial arts and Bellator MMA happened June 24. The final press conference before their inaugural New York event happened Thursday and some of the competitors couldn't be happier to be fighting for Bellator.
“I realized something earlier today. As of Sunday morning, Bellator is leading the industry. After this fight, after the show we’re going to put on, Bellator is now having the lead foot. It’s going to be exciting to see how Mr. Kay and Mr. Coker decide to lead from the front as opposed to chasing from the back and that’s a really dope spot to be in.” -Matt Mitrione
One of the most highly anticipated bouts, of the many on the card was Douglas Lima vs Lorenz Larkin. Larkin came into Bellator already highly ranked as a top welterweight, so it was hard to argue against an immediate title shot. He got it and lost the fight, but it is not a losing situation for Larkin since he seems to be happy in his new home at Bellator.
In the same press conference Mitrione sang praises for the promotion. Larkin also made sure fans knew where he fights now is where the best in the world fight.
Douglas Lima successfully defended his title against Lorenz Larkin and all eyes seemed to be on the welterweight for a possible fight against another former UFC contender in Rory Mcdonald. Main event winner Chael Sonnen made sure to point out in the press conference after Bellator NYC that Lima’s win is significant in showing how MMA and the promotion is evolving.
Even though Larkin lost the fight, the attitudes of both him and Lima seemed positive and have not changed about where they are and where the sport is going.
There were lots of winners at Bellator NYC, and while folks may still think otherwise, the biggest winner Saturday night was Bellator MMA.