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|UPDATE: Top wrestlers showcased at Bellator 98 on Spike TV from Albuquerque, N.M., July 31|
By Gary Abbott USA Wrestling
Spike TV To Present Action-Packed Card From Albuquerque On July 31
NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. -- Bellator MMA and Spike TV, both proud supporters of USA Wrestling, present an action-packed fight card on Wednesday, July 31 (7:00pm-10:00pm ET/PT) featuring MMA stars with world-class wrestling pedigree. Among those competing include:
• Ben Askren - 2008 US Olympic freestyle wrestler and NCAA champion wrestler at the University of Missouri
• Mohammed “King Mo” Lawal – All American wrestler at Oklahoma State University, U.S. Freestyle World Team member
• Michael Chandler – All-American wrestler at the University of Missouri
• Shawn Bunch – All-American wrestler at Edinboro University, U.S. Freestyle World Team member
• Bubba Jenkins – NCAA champion wrestler at Arizona State University, Junior World Freestyle Champion
• Michael Barreras - All-American wrestler for Adams State and Central Oklahoma.
“The sport of amateur wrestling churns out some of the best athletes in the world, and this fight card demonstrates the breadth of talent that has risen through the collegiate and Olympic wrestling ranks.” said Bjorn Rebney, Chairman and CEO, Bellator: MMA. “Wrestling deserves the Olympic platform to showcase these incredible athletes.”
Enclosed is the full fight card, which will be held at the Santa Ana Star Center in Rio Rancho, N.M.:
Bellator Lightweight World Title Fight: Michael Chandler (11-0) vs. David Rickels (14-1)
Bellator Welterweight World Title Fight: Ben Askren (11-0) vs. Andrey Koreschkov (13-0)
Bellator Light Heavyweight Tournament Final: King Mo (10-2) vs. Jacob Noe (12-2)
Bellator Heavyweight Tournament Final: Ryan Martinez (10-2) vs. Vitaly Minakov (11-0)
Featherweight Feature Fight: Rob Emerson (12-10) vs. Patricio Pitbull (17-2)
Lightweight Feature Fight: Cris Leyva (9-5) vs. Will Brooks (9-1)
Bantamweight Tournament Semifinals: Rafael Silva (19-3) vs. Rodrigo Lima (11-1)
Bantamweight Tournament Semifinals: Anthony Leone (12-5) vs. Frank Baca (16-2)
Lightweight Feature Fight: Mike Barreras (5-6) vs. Bubba Jenkins (3-0)
Bantamweight Feature Fight: Javier Palacios (1-0) vs. Richard Jacques (1-0)
Middleweight Feature Fight: Jeremy Kimball (9-3) vs. Keith Berry (15-10)
Bantamweight Feature Fight: Adrian Cruz (4-0) vs. Felipe Chavez (5-3)
Bantamweight Feature Fight: Steve Garcia (1-0) vs. Shawn Bunch (1-0)
Featherweight Feature Fight: Cliff Wright Jr. (7-4) vs. Donald Sanchez (28-13)
For more information, visit Bellator.com, follow Bellator on Twitter @BellatorMMA, follow Bellator Chairman & CEO Bjorn Rebney @BjornRebney and check out Bellator on Facebook at www.facebook.com/BellatorMMA
About Bellator MMA
Bellator MMA is the world’s largest tournament based Mixed Martial Arts organization. Televised to nearly 500 Million homes worldwide in over 107 countries, Bellator’s majority owner is entertainment giant Viacom. In the United States, Bellator can be seen on Spike TV, the MMA television leader. With over 150 world-class athletes under contract, Bellator is home to many of the sport’s top mixed martial artists. Bellator’s founder & CEO, Bjorn Rebney, is an experienced fighting sports and entertainment executive with a deep commitment to the purity and integrity of the sport of MMA and its athletes. Bellator’s core philosophy is that title shots should be earned, not given. This belief gave rise to Bellator’s real sport, tournament-based format, which gives Bellator’s tournaments a true playoff feel that keeps the sport true and distances itself from the subjective side of fighting sports found in organizations that utilize a matchmaking/casting formula. Bellator MMA is comprised of an executive team that includes top industry professionals in television production, live event orchestration, fighter development/relations, venue procurement, sponsorship creation/development, international licensing, marketing, advertising, publicity and commission relations. Bellator is based in Newport Beach, California.
About Spike TV:
Spike TV is available in 98.7 million homes and is a division of Viacom Media Networks. A unit of Viacom (NASDAQ: VIA, VIAB), Viacom Media Networks is one of the world's leading creators of programming and content across all media platforms. Spike TV's Internet address is www.spike.com and for up-to-the-minute and archival press information and photographs, visit Spike TV's press site at http://www.spike.com/press. Follow us on Twitter @spiketvpr for the latest in breaking news updates, behind-the-scenes information and photos.
mun2 is the leading Hispanic cable network for young millennial adults 18-34. From reality to music, on-air to digital, mun2 creates original content that resonates across a multi-screen platform. Young, vibrant and unabashedly Latino, mun2 has a distribution to over 38 million households. The network is part of Telemundo Media, a division of NBCUniversal.