This past weekend at Bellator 266, Phil Davis (23-6, 1 NC) was tasked with welcoming Yoel Romero (13-6) back to light heavyweight and to Bellator. Davis was coming off of a loss in the opening round of the Light Heavyweight Grand Prix against the champion Vadim Nemkov.
Davis had a great gameplan for Bellator 266. Romero is someone who likes to lull his opponents to sleep before exploding with something that catches them off guard. The problem for Romero is that Davis never quit moving.
He used great angles on the outside to work his jab and use his length. Then, in the second round, he started mixing in his wrestling which completely caught the former Olympic Silver Medalist off guard.
In the third round after realizing he could take Romero down, Davis went to the takedowns. Romero couldn’t get Davis off of him at Bellator 266 and as a result, Davis ended up walking away with a split decision victory.
That said, this fight was not a split decision. I think everyone in the world outside of the one judge who scored the fight for Romero knew that Davis one. Even Romero didn’t believe a scorecard went for him at Bellator 266.
Davis’ Bellator Career
Back in 2015, Davis became a free agent after having a good run in the UFC. Davis entered the UFC when he was just 4-0 and ended up going 9-3 during his 12 fights with the promotion.
Twice he got up to title eliminators, but both times he fell short of the mark. After losing a split decision to Ryan Bader, Davis tested out the market and made the surprising decision to sign with Bellator.
Upon signing with Bellator, Davis went a perfect 4-0 to start which included capturing the Bellator light heavyweight title. Now, he lost the title in his first title defense in another split decision to Ryan Bader.
However, Davis has now gone 10-3 with Bellator. After starting his career on the amateur circuit, Davis has gone a combined 19-6 on the biggest stage and he’s only lost to some of the best. His losses came against Ryan Bader (Twice), Vadim Nemkov (Twice), Rashad Evans, and Anthony “Rumble” Johnson.
Quietly, he’s put together a sensational career, and I don’t think he’s done yet. If he can put together another win or two, he might be challenging for the Bellator light heavyweight title again sometime in 2021.