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Bellator London live blog: Gegard Mousasi vs. Rafael Lovato Jr.

Gegard Mousasi and Rafael Lovato Jr.
Gegard Mousasi and Rafael Lovato Jr. will clash in the Bellator London main event Saturday.
Bellator

This is the Bellator London live blog for Gegard Mousasi vs. Rafael Lovato Jr., a middleweight championship main event at Saturday’s Bellator event at the SSE Arena in London.

Mousasi (45-6-2) has won eight straight fights, while Lovato Jr. is 9-0 in his career.

Check out the Bellator London live blog below.

Round 1: Rafael Lovato Jr. opens up with a leg kick, followed by a kick to the body. Mousasi is quite tentative over the opening minute, allowing his challenger to throw techniques at him. Lovato looks to jump on a guillotine from a clinch position, when he fails he pushes Mousasi against the fence. Mousasi escapes at the midway point of the round, before being immediately taken down. With two minutes left on the clock, Mousasi uses butterfly guard to control the jiu-jitsu legend. With a little over the minute left on the clock, Lovato uses a knee slide pass to pass guard before transitioning to knee-on-belly. Lovato settles into side control with thirty seconds left in the round, attempting a choke before the round ended.

MMA Fighting scores this round 10-9 Lovato Jr.

Round 2: Mousasi stuffs Lovato’s first takedown attempt, but Lovato shoots again and gets him down in the first minute of the round. Sitting with his back against the fence, Mousasi finds space to get back to his feet, but again, Lovato Jr. shoots for another takedown and begins to work to the champion’s back. At the midway point of the round, Mousasi is fending off takedown attempts with his back against the fence. Mousasi eventually gets out of the situation with 90 seconds left on the clock, but showed little urgency in the striking exchanges before the round ended.

MMA Fighting scores this round 10-9 Lovato Jr.

Round 3: Mousasi lands a clean right hand before Lovato dives on a single leg, scrambling to the back of the champion when the takedown wasn’t completed. With his arms around Mousasi’s waist, Lovato batters his knees into the back of Mousasi’s legs before taking him down and moving straight into side control. Once he establishes the position he lands a number of big strikes before transitioning to mount. Avoiding a big elbow, Mousasi gives up his back, prompting Lovato to look for a rear naked choke. Lovato locks up a body triangle, but somehow Mousasi manages to escape the position and wind up on top. Lovato looks to sweep using his guard and attempts a triangle as Mousasi lands big strikes. Mousasi begins to pour on shots from Lovato’s back, opening up a cut on the challenger.

MMA Fighting scores this round 10-9 Mousasi.

Round 4: Mousasi piles on pressure from the opening bell, marching Lovato down and attempting to land a big right hand. Mousasi lands two uppercuts in the opening minute, which seems to make Lovato more hesitant as he closes the distance. Lovato is visibly tiring and his takedown attempts have suffered because of it; he completely bails out of the same single leg attempt he executed on several occasions in the earlier rounds. At the midway point, Mousasi sends Lovato down and again he starts landing measured shots from top position. Lovato looks to take one of Mousasi’s legs and he immediately removes himself from the situation, allowing the American back to his feet. Once standing, Mousasi begins to pick Lovato apart and defends another takedown attempt. Lovato lies on his back, attempting to lure Mousasi onto his terrain, but the champion doesn’t fall for it. Mousasi finishes out the round strongly.

MMA Fighting scores this round 10-9 Mousasi.

Round 5: Lovato attempts two takedowns in the first twenty seconds of the final round, eventually putting the champion down against the fence. Lovato laces the legs of Mousasi from top position as the champion looks to get back to his feet with his back against the fence. 90 seconds into the round, Lovato looks to take Mousasi’s back and established a body triangle by the midway point of the round. Mousasi stays two-on-one with Lovato’s choking arm, allowing him to avoid the rear-naked choke attempt. With 90 seconds left on the clock, Lovato begins to land big punches from the back. Mousasi remains calm despite the shots, but has no success in freeing himself from the body triangle.

MMA Fighting scores this round 10-9 Lovato Jr.

Official result: Rafael Lovato Jr. def. Gegard Mousasi via majority decision (47-47, 48-47, 48-47)