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Bellator To Crown Two World Champions On June 19
Bellator Fighting Championships returns to the Seminole Hard Rock Live to conclude the inaugural tournament season on June 19 in Hollywood, Fla. The 12-week world championship mixed martial arts tournament will cap off its first nationally televised season with a stacked fight card in the same arena where the tournament first launched April 3rd. Headlining the event will be the Bellator Lightweight and Middleweight championship fights. The Lightweight world title fight pits top ranked Lightweight Eddie Alvarez against submission-of-the-year sensation Toby Imada, with the winner taking home a total of $175,000 and the Bellator Lightweight world title. In the other headlining fight, former Cuban Olympian Judo ace Hector “Shango” Lombard will face off against the Oklahoman All-American wrestler Jared Hess for the 185 lb. belt and $175,000 in tournament earnings. Both world title matchups will be preceded by an action packed series of feature fights showcasing world-class MMA athletes Jorge Masvidal, Troy Gerhart, Luis Palomino and Eric Reynolds. The broadcast event will be featured exclusively in primetime on ESPN Deportes on Saturday, June 20th, with the English language event available Wendsday, June 25th at Bellator.com.
“Our first season has proven that magical things can happen when fighters are allowed to control their own destiny,” said Bellator Fighting Championships CEO Bjorn Rebney. “As a fan of this spectacular sport it’s been my great pleasure to sit cageside week after week and watch these amazing moments happen over and over again.”
Philadelphia Fight Factory standout Eddie Alvarez returns to the city where it all began for him in Bellator to face off against dangerous submission ace Toby Imada for the Bellator Lightweight title. Coming off of his stunning “submission of the year” at Bellator V, Toby Imada will look to beat Alvarez and claim a long deserved world title. As he prepares to compete for the first ever Bellator Lightweight World Championship, Alvarez has stated that he expects his June 19th performance to be the best of his highly distinguished fight career. The winning fighter will have the title belt bestowed upon him immediately following the bout and will defend his world title belt against the winner of Bellator’s season no. 2 challenger series where the promotion’s no. 1 Lightweight contender will be determined.
In the other world title fights, Cuban Judoka Hector Lombard looks to capture his first ever MMA world title when he faces former collegiate wrestling star Jared Hess, who defeated Middleweight hopefuls Yosmany Cabezas and Daniel Tabera to earn this shot at the Middleweight belt. With their combined records of 28-2, the duo is guaranteed to thrill the Florida crowd with their differing styles. Hess brings world-class wrestling skills to the Bellator cage with a well-rounded MMA arsenal and tremendous stamina, while Lombard will look to continue his dominant performances with his very heavy-handed punishing style. The winner of Bellator’s Middleweight crown will receive a total of $175,000, the world championship belt and the right to defend their title against the winner of Bellator’s season no. 2 Middleweight champion.
Bellator XII will also host a series of special feature bouts spanning across several weight classes and fight genres. Included in the evening’s matchups will be the unofficial Lightweight runner-up matchup between Florida natives and former tournament competitors Jorge Masvidal and Eric Reynolds. Also featured at Bellator XII will be the women’s special feature bout between Rosie Sexton and Valarie Coolbaugh as well as a matchup highlighting Featherweight Luis Palomino who will look to unleash his heavy handed attack on newly minted Bellator competitor Troy Gerhart. With a total of eight high octane fights scheduled for the evening, the highly anticipated season finale should be one of the most memorable MMA events of 2009.
Lightweight World Championship Final Bout
155 lbs. — Eddie Alvarez (17-2) vs. Toby Imada (22-12)
Middleweight World Championship Final Bout
185 lbs. — Hector Lombard (20-2) vs. Jared Hess (8-0-1)
155 lbs. — Jorge Masvidal (17-4) vs. Eric Reynolds (10-2)
145 lbs. — Sami Aziz (4-0-1) vs. Brad Pickett (16-4)
170 lbs. — Josh Martin (6-2-1) vs. Sergio Morais (3-0)
120 lbs. — Valerie Coolbaugh (1-1) vs. Rosie Sexton (9-1)
155 lbs. — Troy Gerhart (5-0) vs. Luis Palomino (10-5)
140 lbs. — Jennifer Kloptsoff (Pro Debut) vs. Stephanie Guimaraes (0-1)