MMA Odds and Ends for Tuesday: Bellator Books Cro Cop vs. Nelson 2, Rampage vs. Silva 4
Bellator has announced a few new fights for upcoming fight cards, and my thoughts on what appears to be the year of the rematch in Bellator are below.
Roy Nelson vs. Mirko Cro Cop 2 Official For Bellator 200
Bellator continues to sign former UFC talent, as the promotion announced the signing of heavyweight legend Mirko Cro Cop. The feared striker from Croatia has his first fight in Bellator officially announced, and he will be taking on Roy Nelson at Bellator 200, which takes place May 25 at SSE Arena in London, England. This is actually a rematch, as the pair of heavyweights met previously in 2011 at UFC 137, when Nelson defeated Cro Cop via third-round TKO via strikes. Since signing with Bellator, Nelson is 1-1 and is coming off of a majority decision loss to Matt Mitrione. Cro Cop, meanwhile, is actually on an eight-fight win streak which includes a notable KO win over King Mo. This rematch is actually a tough one to call considering how much Nelson has declined and how good Cro Cop has looked lately. That being said, we saw what happened in the first fight when these guys met at UFC 137, when Nelson dominated Cro Cop. I'm expecting a close betting line for this one, with Nelson perhaps being a slight favorite, but with some dog action coming in on Cro Cop considering his win streak.
Quuinton "Rampage Jackson" vs. Wanderlei Silva 4 Booked
Bellator president Scott Coker also announced that Quinton "Rampage" Jackson will be taking on Wanderlei Silva for the fourth time, though the date, venue, nor weight class for the bout have been confirmed as of yet. These two legends have met three times previously, with Silva taking two fights over Jackson in PRIDE and Jackson taking the trilogy over Silva in the UFC. Both guys are coming off of decision losses to Chael Sonnen, and both men are in the twilight of their careers. Overall Rampage is 5-2 in Bellator while Silva is 0-1. As bad as Rampage has looked in recent years, considering what happened the third time these two fought and how inactive Silva has been in recent years, it's likely Rampage will open as the betting favorite here, but this is likely a fight that bettors should aim to stay away from considering the volatility of both fighters.
Liddell vs. Ortiz 3 In The Works
And just a quick note here, but it appears we are headed towards a trilogy fight between Chuck Liddell and Tito Ortiz, likely in Bellator, although at this point this is just a rumor. BJPenn.com had it first. Both men have been hinting at the bout for a while now and Liddell has been posting pictures on his Instagram where he looks to be in fight shape. That being said, Liddell is now 48 and he hasn't fought since 2010 and was knocked out cold in his last three fights. Ortiz is coming off of a submission win over Sonnen but likely shouldn't be fighting anymore himself. If the fight happens, Ortiz will definitely be favored to win it, despite the fact Liddell won the pair's first two fights in the UFC. Keep your eyes peeled to MMAOddsbeaker.com for more news.
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Mixed martial arts journalist. Lead writer for MMAOddsbreaker.com and also featured at @MMARatingsNet, @mmanews_com and @fightodds_io.
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