This Saturday in the headliner of Bellator 291, the welterweight championship will be unified. The undisputed champion Yaroslav Amosov (26-0) returns to the cage as he looks to retain his title and remain unbeaten as he takes on the interim champion Logan Storley (14-1).
Do yourself a favor, if you don’t know the backstory as to why Amosov has spent nearly two years away from the cage, watch this video. Amosov was set to defend his title against Michael Page last May. Then, Russia invaded Amosov’s homeland of Ukraine.
Amosov pulled out of the fight and chose to fight for his country and his people. Now, he returns to Bellator to defend his title. When Amosov pulled out of the fight to fight in a much more important fight, Logan Storley stepped in and fought Page for the interim title.
Storley clearly won a decision, but the judges made things interesting with a split. Now, this sets up a rematch from November of 2020. Amosov and Storley fought to a split decision that night. To this day, Amosov is still the only man to have bested Storley inside the cage.
Bellator 291 Prediction
When we go back and look at the first fight, a big difference to me was the striking advantage of the Bellator welterweight champion. Amosov was and is just sharper on the feet. While both men are known for their grappling, the grappling really cancels out in this matchup because both men are so good.
In that first fight, Amosov seemed to be fading near the end of the third round. A round that Storley won. Will cardio play a role over the course of five rounds at Bellator 291? It very well could and if that’s the case, Logan Storley might be in good shape.
I think we are in for a very close matchup on Saturday. The same advantages you saw in the first fight, you’ll likely see again. I see Amosov winning the striking exchanges, but perhaps Storley has more grappling success near the end of the fight.
Ultimately, I think Amosov does enough to win three rounds. The Bellator welterweight champion makes a successful return and wins another split decision over a very game Logan Storley.
Prediction: Yaroslav Amosov by Decision