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Bellator 139 results: Cheick Kongo wrestles Alexander Volkov to unanimous decision victory

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Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Just a week after the major Kimbo Slice vs. Ken Shamrock event at Bellator 138, Bellator staged an event at the Kansas Star Arena in Mulvane, Kan. It was an event with few stakes and a handful of recognizable names, but memorable moments nonetheless. In the main event, UFC veteran Cheick Kongo looked to get back on the winning track after dropping a decision to Muhammed Lawal In February against Bellator heavyweight mainstay Alexander Volkov.

To start the main event contest, Kongo charged in right away for a takedown, but Volkov's good use of underhooks allowed him to shrug off the attempt. Eventually Kongo was able to get in on Volkov's hips after several failed attempts and scoop slam him to the mat. Volkov briefly stood, only to be taken down soon thereafter. Volkov would hang on, but the round would end there as Kongo worked moderately heavy ground and pound on top.

In the second and third rounds, however, Volkov would offer increasingly less resistance. Kongo stuck to a disciplined game plan of attacking right away after punching his way inside and working ground and pound on top. Volkov made occasional attempts at guillotine chokes. He also did a respectable job of covering up from what he could, but barely made any attempt to get to his feet. According to striking data presented during the broadcast, Volkov also landed no strikes on the ground.

Ultimately, Cheick Kongo defeated Alexander Volkov via unanimous decision, with scores of 30-27, 30-27 and 30-27 on the judges' scorecards.

In the co-main event, David Rickels rode hometown support against Canadian UFC veteran John Alessio to an early dominating performance, but one that wouldn't prove fruitful enough.

Rickels unloaded early in the first round against the Canadian, bombing him with all manner of punches, getting Alessio to hunch over, backing up in pain. Rickels walked Alessio down and unloaded against the fence, getting Alessio to fall to his knees and cover up. Rickles, in the heat of the moment, threw a knee to Alessio's head while his knee was touching the ground, causing an immediate halt to the bout and a referee inspection of Alessio.

From there, the fight was waved off by referee Rob Hinds. The bout was eventually ruled a no-contest due to the illegal knee, which took place at 2:24 of the first round.

Elite kickboxer Joe Schilling made his return to the cage after dropping his last Bellator bout via split decision in April. Unfortunately for the GLORY middleweight, he wasn't able to right the ship.

Schilling opened the bout switching stances, but would soon be bullied into the fence only to be dragged down to the mat. Schilling made occasional attempts at cage walking, but was never able to set up a submission or sweep. Additionally, Kato was unable to pass until a failed triangle attempt from Schilling. The American was able to recover half guard, but lacked the attacking finesse to do much with it. Schilling rolled to his base and eventually stood, complaining of shots to the back of the head as the round expired.

At the beginning of the second round, however, Kato opened the frame with a step-in superman punch on the left side that landed flush, shutting out the lights of the decorated kickboxer immediately. The end came at just 34 seconds of the frame.

Opening the broadcast on Spike TV was the return of the former Bellator featherweight champion Pat Curran as he looked to get things going after dropping a decision to Daniel Weichel.

The right hand was a potent weapon for Curran as the former champion was able to land body shots and hooks from that side, routinely unanswered. Curran's jab also landed well, but it was challenged by Sanchez's consistent outside lead leg kick. Sanchez was rocked by an uppercut-hook combo toward the end of the round, but not badly enough for Curran to put the Roufusport fighter in any real danger.

In the second round, an inadvertent clash of heads caused a bad cut over the left eye of Sanchez, but not enough to halt the bout altogether after being inspected by the ringside physician. Curran was briefly able to use his wrestling thereafter, scoring a single leg takedown, although Sanchez was able to return to his feet soon thereafter. Sanchez continued stalking and had occasional success pressing Curran backwards before succumbing to another single leg takedown just before the round expired.

Curran would again return to his wrestling in the third, tripping Sanchez to the mat and working within his guard. Sanchez would spend minutes there before Curran failed on a same-side, arm-in guillotine. Curran would soon secure another single leg and eventual back take with less than a minute to go, which would be all Curran needed to earn the unanimous decision victory, taking 30-27 on all three judges' scorecards.