Can Joe Warren retain the Bellator featherweight championship against two-time Bellator tournament winner Pat Curran? Or will Curran hand Warren his second consecutive loss? And which four featherweights will take the next step toward earning a shot at the Warren-Curran winner?
I'll try to answer those questions as I pick the winners at Bellator 60 below.
What: Bellator 60
When: Friday, the main card starts at 8 p.m. Eastern on MTV2
Where: Horseshoe Casino, Hammond, Indiana
Joe Warren vs. Pat Curran
Warren has transitioned from being one of the best Greco-Roman wrestlers in the world into an impressive start to his mixed martial arts career, beating Kid Yamamoto in just his second career fight and then earning the Bellator featherweight title. However, in Warren's last fight he was brutally knocked out by Alexis Vila.
And that's why I don't much like his chances against Curran. That fight had me questioning Warren's chin and his striking defense, and Curran is a powerful striker. I like Curran to take the belt from Warren.
After losing to Curran in the Bellator featherweight final, Sandro earned an easy win over Rafael Dias in November, and I see him getting another easy win here. Vargas is a solid fighter with a 12-1 record, but he's never beaten anyone nearly as good as Sandro, who's one of the most dynamic featherweights in MMA. I like Sandro to win in exciting fashion.
Wagnney Fabiano was originally scheduled to face Mann but had to drop out with an injury, and although Corey is fine by the standards of a late-notice fill-in, he's a much easier opponent for Mann than Fabiano would have been. Corey is a good wrestler who can control his opponents on the ground and has never been submitted in 14 pro fights, but Mann is excellent off his back and has a good shot of making Corey tap.
Alexandre Bezerra vs. Kenny Foster
Bezerra went 4-0 in Bellator in 2011 and is now in a Bellator tournament for the first time, getting a short-notice opponent in Foster, who was added to the tournament on just a day's notice when Genair da Silva missed weight. Bezerra is a fun fighter to watch because he can finish opponents in a variety of ways, and I think he'll finish Foster.
Daniel Straus vs. Jeremy Spoon
Spoon is an interesting prospect who has built up a 12-0 record without fighting many high-quality opponents. I don't think he's quite ready for Straus, a good wrestler who should be able to take him down and control him for a decision.