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Bellator 158 predictions

Photo via Bellator MMA

Bellator MMA makes its organizational debut in the UK, albeit with a card badly damaged by injury and worse. Still, it features a number of standout UK fighters plus a top welterweight contender fight.

What: Bellator 158: Daley vs. Lima

Where: O2 Arena, London, England

When: Saturday, the preliminary card starts at 6:30 p.m. ET on MMA Fighting. The five-fight main card starts on Spike TV at 9 p.m. ET.

Paul Daley vs. Douglas Lima

From what I hear, Lima fought Andrey Koreshkov with a badly damaged knee. This isn't to say Koreshkov wouldn't have won, but he certainly got there on terms unfavorable to Lima. In any case, I don't think Lima is the striker Daley is, but I do believe he's more well rounded. Lima should be able to work enough from the outside long enough to close the distance and pressure Daley on the inside. This fight could drag at times if Lima has trouble taking Daley down against the fence, but generally speaking, the Brazilian has the diversity of offense required to win.

Pick: Lima

Matt Mitrione vs. Oli Thompson

I'm really not sure how I feel about this one. Carl Seumanutafa absolutely rocked Mitrione when he switched stances, landing an incredible blow. Somehow Mitrione cleared his medicals and made it to London, but this one makes me nervous. If Mitrione thinks he can simply cruise fight to fight without taking any of them particularly seriously, he's going to find trouble. Yes, he's better than the opposition, but many will rise to the occasion when faced with a UFC veteran they can pick off. There's no reason to think when Mitrione's at his best that Thompson will win, but I don't know if we're at Mitrone's best.

Pick: Mitrione

Michael Page vs. Evangelista Santos

Santos doesn't think much of Page's abilities, but I sure do. Santos has some ability on the ground, but it likely won't matter. Page might get held against the fence occasionally in this bout, but it will mostly be contested at distance. And to the extent that's true, that's just how much more quickly 'Cyborg' will get put away with strikes.

Pick: Page

Lukasz Klinger vs. Francis Carmont

The UFC veteran would have to be terribly off form to lose this. Carmont has his problems in terms of being entertaining or forcing quick action, but he's at least careful and poised. Klinger is the opposite of that. His recklessness could potentially cause Carmont problems, but realistically, it shouldn't.

Pick: Carmont

James Gallagher vs. Mike Cutting

Gallagher doesn't have a ton of experience, but Cutting is a journeyman with a record barely above .500. Whatever Gallagher's limitations, they aren't Cutting's.

Pick: Gallagher

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