For the second time in history, the sport of mixed martial arts is being contested in the historic Madison Square Garden in New York City.
On Saturday, Bellator MMA hosted one of their most stacked cards in the promotion’s history.
Bellator Welterweight Champion Douglas Lima defended his championship in the first fight of Bellator: NYC. He defended his title against Lorenz Larkin, who is making his Bellator debut.
Lima and Larkin were hesitant to engage at the start of the fight. Lima landed a body kick. Larkin retaliated with a kick of his own. Both fighters struggled to land for the majority of the round. Lima and Larkin clearly respected each other’s power. Larkin later landed a clean combination, while Lima responded with leg kicks. The round ended with Lima landing a clean combination and holding Larkin against the cage.
Lima was the aggressor to start the second round. He opened the round with landing a couple kicks to the body and legs. Larkin began to be more active. However, Larkin struggled to land but did manage to bust Lima open. Larkin landed a strong combination with Lima against the cage, but Lima dropped Larkin with a punch. Lima swarmed on top of Larkin, but Larkin held onto Lima and slowed the champion down. Larkin managed to fight his way back to his feet. Both fighters threw fight-finishing blows towards the end of the round.
Lima landed a body kick to start the middle round. Both fighters were hesitant to exchange for the first half of the round. Lima began landing jabs. Larkin was active but struggled to land. Larkin landed another hard kick to the body. The round ended with both fighters trading punches.
Neither fighter was very active at the start of the fourth round. Larkin landed a kick to Lima’s body. Lima threw heavy hands but missed his opponent. Larkin continued to have success with his kicks to the body. Towards the end of the round, Lima knocked Larkin to the ground. Lima went into Larkin’s guard. In the final seconds, Larkin fought his way back to his feet.
At the start of the final round, neither fighter produced any significant shots. Larkin landing a jumping, spinning back kick. Lima landed a couple clean jabs in the later half of the round. Both fighters traded kicks in the final minute of the fight. The fight ended with both fighters swinging punches.
Douglas Lima def. Lorenz Larkin by decision to retain the Bellator Welterweight Championship [50-45, 48-47, 48-47]