Bellator 276 report Borics v Burnell


Borics v Burnell
European rivals Mads Burnell and Adam Borics are both hoping for a title shot

The story below contains details of what happened at Bellator 276. You can watch the main card here from 21:00 on BBC iPlayer (UK only) and BBC Three.

Hungarian featherweight contender Adam Borics claimed victory after a thrilling main event clash with Mads Burnell at Bellator 276, then called for a shot at the Bellator featherweight title.

In a hugely entertaining five-round main event, 28-year-olds Borics and Burnell went back and forth in a crowd-pleasing encounter that saw both men enjoy successes with their strikes during the all-action 25-minute clash at the Family Arena in St Louis, Missouri.

Denmark’s Burnell pushed the pace throughout all five rounds, continually pressing forward and working Borics to the body with some punishing shots to the Hungarian’s midsection.

But Borics looked the more effective striker overall, with his higher strike output and greater variety of shots giving him the edge in the eyes of the judges, who awarded him the unanimous decision with scores of 49-46, 50-45, 49-46.

Both men entered the cage jointly ranked number two in the Bellator featherweight division but, following his victory over Burnell, Borics said he hoped to be next in line to face the winner of the upcoming featherweight title rematch between champion AJ McKee and former two-division champion Patricio ‘Pitbull’ Freire.

“Look, I am not even breathing,” he said after improving his record to 18 wins and one loss.

“The hard work pays off, guys! I am the next!”

Phil Davis
Davis defeated former UFC contender Yoel Romero in September

‘Mr Wonderful’ wrestles his way to another win

In the co-main event, former Bellator light-heavyweight champion Phil ‘Mr Wonderful’ Davis showcased his wrestling dominance as he claimed a shutout victory over former title challenger Julius Anglickas.

Davis, 37, repeatedly took his man to the canvas throughout the course of the three-round match-up, with local favourite Anglickas, 30, unable to make any headway using his boxing-based style.

Davis’ 30-27, 30-27, 30-27 victory puts him right in the mix at the top of the Bellator light-heavyweight division, with only champion Vadim Nemkov and number-one contender Corey Anderson ahead of him in the 205-pound pecking order.

And with that duo set to face off for the title on 15 April at Bellator 277, Davis will be hoping his 24th career victory was good enough to put him next in line for a title shot against the winner later this year.

‘The Human Cheat Code’ calls for title shot after dominant win

Johnny Eblen claimed the biggest win of his career by shutting down former title challenger John Salter, then called for a title shot of his own.

Undefeated Eblen, 30, extended his perfect record to 11-0 by winning all three rounds on all three scorecards against 36-year-old Salter, whose last bout saw him unsuccessfully challenge champion Gegard Mousasi for the Bellator middleweight title.

And, after scores of 30-27 on all three scorecards, the fighter known as ‘The Human Cheat Code’ said the time was right for him to step up and challenge Mousasi for the 185-pound title.

“I’m right here, dog. I’m ready to take him out,” he said.

“You’re an old lion, I’m a young lion. Let’s get up in here, let’s make this fight happen!”

Rabadanov snaps ‘The Maori Kid’s’ win streak

In the first main-card bout of the night, Russia’s Gadzhi Rabadanov welcomed New Zealand’s Jay Jay Wilson to the lightweight division by handing ‘The Maori Kid’ his first career defeat.

Wilson 24, headed into the bout undefeated at 8-0, but after struggling to make weight at featherweight, opted to move up to lightweight. However, his first bout at 155 pounds saw him lose his perfect record as he was outpointed by 28-year-old Rabadanov, who stayed more compact and composed through the course of the three-round fight to earn scores of 30-27, 29-28, 29-28.

The victory gave Rabadanov, a former lightweight champion for African promotion EFC, his second straight win inside the Bellator cage as he looks to establish himself as a rising contender in the 155-pound division.

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