Tomorrow night in the main event of Bellator 272, we will see a battle for the bantamweight title. The champion Sergio Pettis (21-5) takes on the former champion Kyoji Horiguchi (29-3). Horiguchi will be looking to regain the title that he never lost inside the cage.
Back in 2019 at Bellator 222, Horiguchi captured the bantamweight title when he defeated Darrion Caldwell by decision. That win made him a two-promotion champion between Bellator and RIZIN. However, Horiguchi never ended up defending his Bellator title.
Horiguchi went back to RIZIN and lost to Kai Asakura. He ended up relinquishing the Bellator title and secured a rematch with Asakura where he was able to avenge the loss back in December of last year. Horiguchi won by knockout.
The loss that he suffered was his first loss since 2015 when he lost to Demetrious Johnson for the UFC flyweight title. There are a lot of people betting on Horiguchi tomorrow, but heâ€™s going to have his hands full with Sergio Pettis.
Sergio Pettis has gotten off to a blistering start since jumping from the UFC. After a solid run in the UFC which included wins over Joseph Benavidez and Brandon Moreno, Pettis made the jump to Bellator in 2020.
So far, heâ€™s gone a perfect 3-0 with the promotion which includes capturing the bantamweight title. In May he took the title away from Juan Archuleta when he was able to outpoint him over the course of five rounds.
Bellator 272 Prediction
This is such a fantastic matchup and I really canâ€™t wait for this Bellator title fight. Iâ€™m expecting this fight to take place on the feet and it will be really interesting to see who is able to utilize their gameplan the best.
For Pettis, the key is going to be keeping the fight tactical from range. I really like the development Iâ€™ve seen in his striking and if he can make it a point fight, heâ€™s going to be in good shape. I also like his ability to take things to the ground and use his ground game if need be.
That said, the former Bellator champion has a lot of pop in his hands and that power could prove to be a big advantage. Horiguchi can end this fight with his power and I think his power has the ability to throw Pettis off and make things difficult for the current champion.
Iâ€™m expecting both men to find success in this one. I think Horiguchi is going to rock Pettis in the early rounds, however, I think Pettis will come on strong in the later rounds. This fight is going to the cards and I think the judges might event be split. In the end, I see Sergio Pettis keeping his title and remaining Bellatorâ€™s best.
Prediction: Sergio Pettis by Split Decision