Sam Sicilia isn’t getting an easy fight in his first appearance for Bellator.
The former UFC featherweight will make his debut with the promotion at Bellator 189 vs. Marcos Galvao (18-8-1) in a 145-pound bout on Dec. 1 at the WinStar World Casino in Thackerville, Okla. Sicilia signed a multi-fight deal with Bellator this past August.
Sicilia (15-8) developed a reputation as a heavy hitter during his time in the Octagon, with three of his five UFC wins coming by way of knockout. However, a three-fight skid spelled the end of his time with that organization and he’ll be looking for a fresh start at Bellator 189.
In Galvao, Sicilia faces a fighter who has been a top contender in Bellator’s bantamweight division for the past six years. The Brazilian won a title at 135 pounds when he submitted Joe Warren at Bellator 135, only to lose it in his first defense against Eduardo Dantas. He recently moved back up to 145 pounds this past March, dropping a unanimous decision to Emmanuel Sanchez.
Another fighter with UFC experience, Dufresne has gone 1-1 since joining Bellator. Her lone win was a stunning first-round submission of women’s MMA pioneer Marloes Coenen, a victory that was marred by Dufresne badly missing weight for the contest.
Leibrock put herself on the map with a 37-second knockout of Ronda Rousey associate Marina Shafir at Invicta FC 13 two years ago. She would lose to future Invicta featherweight champion Megan Anderson in her next outing before bouncing back with another first-round finish, this time of Amy Coleman. Like Sicilia, she will be making her Bellator debut on Dec. 1.
In the Bellator 189 main event, women’s featherweight champion Julia Budd (10-2) looks for her first title defense when she takes on Arlene Blencowe (10-6), while the middleweight co-headliner sees Brazilian jiu-jitsu expert Rafael Lovato Jr. (6-0) put his undefeated record on the line against Chris Honeycutt (10-1).