Ste Passey from MMAMount talks about the recently announced fight between Bellator Middleweight Champion Alexander Shlemenko and Bellator Season 8 Tournament Finalist Brett Cooper.
After suffering a broken hand in training, Season 8 Middleweight Tournament Winner Doug Marshall will have to put his title shot on hold. Using the Bellator Tournament Championship Replacement Clause for the first time, Bellator fighters and executives voted to determine their choice of which fighter would earn their title shot.
After consideration, reigning Bellator Middleweight World Champion Alexander “Storm” Shlemenko will now face Season 8 Tournament Finalist Brett Cooper. The night will also feature the opening rounds of Bellator’s Fall Season Middleweight Tournament, the live “Fight Master” Tournament Final, and the return of “The Baddest Man on The Planet” Joe Warren.
The event will broadcast LIVE starting at 8 p.m. EST on Spike. The preliminary card will be streamed LIVE and FREE on Spike.com starting at 6:00 p.m. EST. Tickets for the event are on sale now at Ticketmaster.com or by visiting the Mohegan Sun Box Office, with tickets starting at just $30 dollars.
Displaying a strong performance in last season’s tournament, Cooper is eager to get in the cage with Shlemenko and not only capture his first Bellator World Title, but also wipe his 2011 loss to Shlemenko off his record.
“My goal has always been the same, get the belt,” Cooper said. “I’m always making improvements and this is an incredible opportunity I’m not going to pass up. When we fought in 2011, it was an absolute war, and I’ve grown into a much different fighter over the last few years. I’m 26 years old, and this is my time to take the next step.”
The full fight card for Bellator 98 from Mohegan Sun Casino has been finalized and the highly talented middleweight division includes Bellator veterans Brian Rogers and Andreas Spang, submission ace Giva Santana and Denmark’s Mikkel Parlo.
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The full fight card is listed below:
Bellator Middleweight World Title Fight: Alexander “Storm” Shlemenko (47-7) vs. Brett Cooper (19-8)
Bellator Bantamweight Feature Fight: Joe Warren (8-3) vs. Nick Kirk (10-2)
Bellator Middleweight Tournament Opening Round: Justin Torrey (7-0) vs. Andreas Spang (8-3)
Bellator Middleweight Tournament Opening Round: Perry Filkins (7-1) vs. Jeremy Kimball (10-3)
Bellator Middleweight Tournament Opening Round: Brian Rogers (10-5) vs. Mikkel Parlo (9-1)
Bellator Middleweight Tournament Opening Round: Jason Butcher (6-0) vs. Giva Santana (18-2)
Lightweight Feature Fight: Derek Anderson (8-0) vs. Patricky Pitbull (10-4)
Light Heavyweight Feature Fight: Jeff Nader (5-5) vs. Mike Mucitelli (5-0)
Middleweight Feature Fight: Dave Vitkay (12-12) vs. Brennan Ward (5-1)
Lightweight Feature Fight: Andrew Calandrelli (6-3) vs. Ryan Quinn (7-4-1)
Featherweight Feature Fight: Nick Piedmont (8-3-1) vs. Matt Bessette (11-4)
Bantamweight Feature Fight: Glenn Allair (3-1) vs. Riso Disciullo (debut)
Heavyweight Feature Fight: Josh Diekman (12-5) vs. Parker Porter (5-3)