On the heels of Bellator Fighting Championships’ fourth-season finale, the promotion’s upcoming fifth iteration has already begun to take shape.
Sherdog.com has learned from a source close to the fighters that Brazilian prospects Luis “Sapo” Santos (Pictured) and Douglas Lima will compete in Bellator’s Season 5 welterweight tournament. According to the source, Santos earned his spot by besting Nicolae Cury by unanimous decision at Bellator 45 on May 21.
Santos and Lima aside, few details have been revealed regarding Bellator’s fourth welterweight tournament, which is expected to begin in September and will air on MTV2. Former champion Lyman Good was expected to face Dan Hornbuckle for a spot in the eight-man field at Bellator 44, but Good was forced to withdraw from the bout due to injury. UFC veteran Ben Saunders is rumored to compete, as are fourth-season finalist Rick Hawn and recent signee Michael Costa.
Santos, 31, will ride an eight-fight win streak into his first Bellator tournament. “Sapo” made his one and only WEC appearance in 2008, losing by doctor stoppage following the first round of his bout against Alex Serdyukov. A veteran of more than 50 pro fights, Santos has 36 stoppage victories to his credit.
Lima, the most recent Maximum Fighting Championship welterweight titlist, impressed during his three-fight stint in Canada’s premier promotion. After submitting Ryan Ford with an armbar in his MFC debut, Lima finished Jesse Juarez with a combination triangle-armbar in November to claim the title. Lima’s lone title defense came in April, when “The Phenom” smashed Terry Martin in just 74 seconds at MFC 29.