Bellator announces move to five-round main events

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Bellator was in the news yesterday with President Scott Coker having appeared on Ariel Helwani’s MMA Hour. Coker was on the show to break a number of different news items including a couple of title fights.

However, Coker did announce that the promotion was making a big move in the way that they do main events. Bellator is now going to model in the UFC in that they will have five-round main events moving forward in 2022.

The UFC made this switch a few years ago and it’s been a big success for fans. Bellator has seen a number of great fights over the last couple of years in main events, but fans always felt a little let down with the three-round structure.



One thing that might’ve started this change process is the fight between Yoel Romero and Phil Davis a few weeks ago. After the fight concluded, Romero was confused because he thought their Bellator main event was five rounds.

Bellator’s Change

A confused Romero walked to the center of the octagon where Phil Davis won by split decision. Now, Romero has always been one of those guys who can explode and do something remarkable at any second.

Perhaps if their fight was two more rounds, he could’ve won his Bellator debut. Nevertheless, the rules are what they are and Romero fell short. Bellator had been kicking the tires on this change for some time and that might’ve been one of the things that pushed them over the edge.

As mentioned, this change will start at the beginning of 2022. Last week at Bellator 267, MVP edged out Douglas Lima in their rematch. Again, this was another three-round main event and there was so much talk about how this fight should’ve been five rounds.

There’s already internal conversations at Bellator regarding the trilogy between Page and Lima. I could see the promotion having the trilogy between the two as one of the first non-title five-round main events.

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