This is the Bellator 170 live blog for Ralek Gracie vs. Hisaki Kato, a middleweight bout at Saturday night's Bellator event at The Forum in Inglewood, Calif.
Gracie, who is 3-0 and making his Bellator debut, will face Kato, who has won three of his past five fights, on the main card.
Check out the Bellator 170 live blog below.
Round 1: First fight for Ralek Gracie in six years. Should be interesting. Jason Herzog is the referee. They don't touch gloves, and Gracie to the center. A healthy range right now between the two. An awkward leg kick misses from Gracie, and now Kato lands one near the fence. Strong body kick from Gracie lands, and now he slips dong another one — Kato punishes him with a couple of shots on his way back up. So far Gracie hasn't gone for any kind of takedown. They trade leg kicks, and that throws them both off balance. Gracie again with a kick to the body. Kato patient, waiting for his openings. Wild right hand from Gracie. Stalling a bit in the middle of the round, and the star-studded crowd lets it be known. Kato with his arms waving, but very little action. Pretentious foot stomp from Gracie misses by a mile. Leg kick lands hard from Kato. Been a lot of feet so far. For a moment Gracie hit the deck, mostly slip, and waited a beat to see if Kato would follow him down. He didn't. Huge superman punch lands from Kato, and he surges forward! He tries to take Gracie's head off, and Gracie holds on. Now they stand back up. That flurry won the round for Kato. MMA Fighting scores R1 for Kato, 10-9.
Round 2: Gracie to center. He might have to get this thing to the ground if he's going to have any kind of remote chance. Crowd with a chorus of boos as they circle. A minute into the round, and very little action, as Kato lands a leg kick. Two minutes in, and there's very little to talk about in the way of offense. Gracie now staying on the outside, rolling around. He's done virtually nothing. Now the referee warns them to start fighting. And Kato responds, moves in and lands a couple of shots in close. Gracie lowers for a quick moment, but can't get ahold of Kato. They now circle, and the crowd resumes the boos. A quick flurry from Kato. A nice leg kick lands from Kato, and that's been the most versatile brand of action in this fight. Foot stomp attempt doesn't work from Gracie. MMA Fighting scores R2 for Kato, 10-9 (20-18 overall)
Round 3: Leg kick from Kato. This is bordering on becoming a Kafka short story. Just very minimal action. Gracie doesn't belong in there. They trade kicks, and Gracie peels out from the heat center. But he's trying to bring the action a bit, bobbing inside, and now he tries for a take down. He has the clinch for the first time, a nice body lock, and Kato is thus far defending it. Gracie still working for it, and he now has Kato's back a bit. Trying to hook his leg and toss Kato, but Kato is balanced. Now Kato throws Gracie off of him and lands a couple of shots, and Gracie ducks in and finally manages to get it. We'll see if he can do something here. Right now in Kato's mount, and Kato is holding on for dear life. Not going to allow Gracie to pass guard easily. A minute-and-a-half left in the round, and Gracie postures up. He is trying to pry himself out of the guard, but Kato clinging to his head, keeping it right in his thorax. Now Gracie does pass to side control, and immediately to full mount. This is getting interesting. The boa is coming to life late. Inside of 30 seconds to go, and Gracie being clung to by Kato, who just doesn't have the time to sort out a submission at the end. MMA Fighting scores R3 for Gracie, 10-9 (29-28 overall for Kato)
Bellator 170 official results: Hisaki Kato def. Ralek Gracie via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)