Fight Facts: Bellator 256

By: Jay Pettry
Apr 12, 2021

Fight Facts is a breakdown of all of the interesting information and cage curiosities on every card, with some puns, references and portmanteaus to keep things fun. These deep stat dives delve into the numbers, providing historical context and telling the stories behind those numbers.

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Bellator MMA kicked off its light heavyweight grand prix with a rematch years in the making atop Bellator 256. The uninspiring fight card brought about a nearly historic number of decisions, with eight of the last nine bouts of the night going the distance. This card featured the lowest finish rate of any Bellator card with 10 fights or more, a bundle of huge betting favorites all prevailing and one of the fastest knockouts across all Bellator women’s divisions.

My Kingdom for a Finish: Ten fights across this event ended up in the hands of the judges, tying Bellators 209 and 223 for the second-most decisions at a single Bellator show. Bellator 239 has the most (11), but there were 16 bouts that night compared to 13 for Bellator 256.

Who Judges the Judges: With 10 of 13 fights going the distance, Bellator 256 captured the top spot for the lowest finish rate (23.1 percent) of any Bellator event with at least 10 matches scheduled.

No Value, No Peace: In just two events and 25 fights this year, a whopping nine bouts have closed with betting favorites above -500. In comparison, the Ultimate Fighting Championship has seen exactly that many heavy favorites across 12 events in 2021 including the upcoming UFC on ABC 2 card.

Two Men Enter: Six fighters came into Bellator 256 with undefeated records: Dalton Rosta, Jornel Lugo, Cody Law, Nathan Ghareeb, Jaylon Bates and Diana Avsaragova. Of those six, only Ghareeb suffered a loss, but he was facing fellow unbeaten Law.

Bader to the Bone: Ryan Bader got his hand raised after beating Lyoto Machida across the good part of five rounds. “Darth” has still yet to suffer a defeat when competing in a tournament, including his four appearances on Season 8 of “The Ultimate Fighter.”

Anti-Revenge Tour: Through his career, Machida has faced four different foes on a second time. He has lost each of his rematches to Mauricio Rua, Gegard Mousasi, Phil Davis and now Bader.

Slow Yet Methodical: Liz Carmouche needed all three rounds to defeat Vanessa Porto, prevailing by unanimous decision over the Brazilian. Across her last 10 fights, “Girl-Rilla” has reached the scorecards in nine of those outings dating back to 2013.

Getting Over That Hump: In a 31-fight career that began at a higher weight class in 2005, Porto has still never won five consecutive bouts. The loss to Carmouche snapped a four-fight win streak, her longest since a run from 2010 to 2012.

Cat Scratch Fever: In under three minutes, Cat Zingano tapped Olivia Parker with an armbar. The stoppage coming at 2:56, it is the quickest armbar in Bellator women’s featherweight history.

Bellatorcules: “Hercules” Rosta kept his unblemished record intact at 5-0 by prevailing in a decision over Tony Johnson. The Pennsylvania native started his career with three knockouts, but he has gone the distance in his last two. All five appearances have come under the Bellator banner.

Have an A1 Day: Lugo required the full 15 minutes to overcome Cass Bell, but he ended his night with a unanimous decision win. “A1” is now a perfect 6-0 as a pro, but he has gone the distance in his last four outings.

Special Guillotine: Jaylon Bates secured a rare Japanese Necktie submission on Jeffrey Glossner in the second round. The first in Bellator history came in 2020, when Oliver Enkamp hit one on Emmanuel Dawa in Paris.

Not Just a Pretty Face: Avsaragova wrecked Tara Graff in just 29 seconds, and in the process earned the second-quickest finish in Bellator women’s divisional history. The fastest came from Arlene Blencowe, who blew Amanda Bell away in 22 seconds at Bellator 224 in 2019.

Float Like a Butterfly, Sting Like a Fly: The stoppage for Avsaragova was registered as a clean knockout, making her victory just the seventh KO across all women’s matches with Bellator. Including this one, women’s flyweights have accounted for five of those seven.

Graffed Up: Graff’s previous appearance came against Valerie Loureda, and she was knocked unconscious with a barrage of punches at exactly the five-minute mark of Round 2. As such, Graff is now the first female fighter ever to be knocked out cold twice inside a Bellator cage.

Never Say Never Again: Coming into Bellator 256, Jeremy Kennedy had never lost by decision (19 fights); Talita Nogueira had never won on the scorecards (nine fights); and Bell (six fights), Isaiah William (seven fights) and Will Smith (five fights) had never dropped consecutive bouts.

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