John LaRocca previews tonight's Bellator show



Tonight on SPIKE TV,  Bellator 102 will take place.  This event will feature the Season 9 Heavyweight Tournament Semi-Finals,  Summe Series Bantamweight Tournament Finals, and the Season 9 Middleweight Tournament Semi-Finals.   Other then this show featuring UFC veteran Cheick Kongo's Bellator debut,  this show has flown under the radar this season.  Looking at the card,  Bellator 102 has potential to be one of the best and deliver a lot of fireworks.   Here are my predictions of tonights main card.
 
Season 9 Middleweight (185) Tournament Semi-Finals
Perry Filkins (8-1) versus Brennan Ward (7-1)
 
Brennan Ward was a late replacement in tournament back at Bellator 98 for the injured Andreas Spang.  Ward wa really impressive by defeating Justin Torrey by TKO to advance.  Perry Filkins has a ton of personality and showed great heart in defeating Jeremy Kimball by rear naked choke in the third round.  I see Ward being able to control Filkins for three rounds.  Kimball who was not as strong as Ward, was able to take Filkins down and hold him down. 
 
Winner:  Brennan Ward by unanimous decision.
 
Season 9 Middleweight (185) Tournament Semi-Finals
Jason Butcher (7-0) versus Mikkel Parlo (10-1)
 
This has all the makings for a great fight.  It is the classic grappler (Butcher) versus striker (Parlo).   Parlo defeated Brian Rogers by unanimous decision in a grueling fight at Bellator 98 to advance.   Butcher defeated BJJ legend Giva Santana by TKO in the second round to advance.  Parlo hits hard, but that causes the gas tank to run.  Butcher is really good on the ground and if he can weather the storm, should be successful.
 
Winner:  Jason Butcher by second round submission
 
2013 Summer Series Bantamweight (135) Tournament Finals
Rafael Silva (17-3) versus. Anthony Leone (13-4
 
This has all the makings to be a great fight.  These are two of the top bantamweights in the world today.  Both are so evenly matched that it is a pick'em fight.  Leone is really good, but Silva is as well and I feel just a little better at everything.  
 
Winner: Rafael Silva by split decision
 
Season 9 Heavyweigth (265) Heavyweight Tournament Semi-Finals
Lavar Johnson (17-7) versus  Spartan Queiroz (6-3)
 
The first fight of this four-man Heavyweight Tournament has potential for some great knockouts.  Only way I see Queiroz winning is if this fight can go into deep water.  If he can grapple and gas out Johnson, he could win.   If Johnson can land a heavy blow clean.  It will be lights out for Queiroz. 
 
Winner:  Lavar Johnson by Round 1 KO
 
Season 9 Heavyweigth (265) Heavyweight Tournament Semi-Finals
Cheick Kongo (18-8) versus Mark Godbeer (8-1)
 
Mark Godbeer hasn't fought since the middle of 2012.  So ring rust is something you will have to factor in.  He six of weight wins have come by knockout and he has finished all of his opponents of those eight victories.   Kongo is coming off a loss  in the UFC  and has the most pressure on him to succeed in Bellator.  I see Kongo playing things safe and actually going to the ground.  I wouldn't be shocked to see him trying for more takedowns in this fight.
 
Winner:  Cheick Kongo by KO in Round 2
 
John LaRocca
 
 
 
 

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