It seemed like a dream fight on paper: Bellator’s first superfight, featuring welterweight champion Rory MacDonald going up in weight to challenge middleweight titleholder Gegard Mousasi for the latter’s championship in an attempt to become Bellator’s first simultaneous two-weight titleholder.
In practice, however, the main event of Bellator 206 turned out to be exactly what it was: A welterweight fighting against a competitor who held light heavyweight titles in multiple organizations. Mousasi used ruthless precision to roll over MacDonald and earn a TKO victory on Saturday night. The time of the stoppage at SAP Center in San Jose was 3:23 of round two.
“I knew I had better standup, the reach advantage, speed advantage,” Mousasi said. “So my goal was to keep it in the standup, make him panic and go for the takedown.”
That was an accurate summation of the fight, as Mousasi got into his groove early, finding a home with his jab and keeping MacDonald from getting anything untracked.
Early in the second, MacDonald shot for a takedown, but Mousasi ended up on top, and from there it was all a matter of time. Somewhere along the way, MacDonald appeared to suffer a broken nose. Elbows and punches were rained down by Mousasi with reckless abandon until referee Herb Dean waved the fight off.
“I had hurt him a little bit already,” Mousasi said. “And it was perfect, this was the fight I needed.”
Mousasi (45-6-2), who left the UFC as a free agent on a five-fight win streak, has now pushed that streak to eight in a row. That was his 37th career finish. MacDonald (20-5) has a two fight win streak snapped and has now lost three of his past five.