Bellator 258 Preview: Michael “Venom” Page – Derek Anderson

Tomorrow night on the main card of Bellator 258, we will see the return of one of the more dynamic strikers on the roster. The entertaining Michael “Venom” Page (18-1) makes the walk for the first time in 2021 against Derek Anderson (17-3).

Since making his Bellator debut back in 2014, MVP has been a puzzle that only one man has been able to solve. Page has used his dynamic striking and unique style to fluster the entire welterweight roster.

Back at Bellator 221, MVP got his shot at the welterweight title against Douglas Lima. Page was doing well at times, but ultimately got clipped and put to sleep by the Bellator welterweight champion.

Since that loss, MVP has been trying to work his way back to a title shot. He will enter the cage tomorrow night riding a four-fight win streak. Should he win, he will definitely get the next crack at the title.

However, Derek Anderson is looking to play spoiler at Bellator 258. Anderson has always been considered one of the better Bellator prospects, but his inactivity has really hurt him. He’s won three in a row, but this is only his sixth fight since the start of 2016.

However, this is the shortest turnaround he’s had in this stretch. We last saw him in November at Bellator 251 where he knocked out Killys Mota. Should he get the win tomorrow night, it would be hard to deny him of a shot at the title.

Bellator 258 Prediction

I’m extremely excited about this matchup at Bellator 258. Both men have good striking and both men have power to put the other out. One thing about Anderson’s game that I love is how well-rounded he is.

If you look at his seventeen wins, six are by knockout, six are by submission, and five are by decision. Wherever the fight goes, Derek Anderson will be comfortable. The key for him tomorrow is going to be mixing in his grappling.

For MVP, the game plan should be simple. That game plan should say keep this fight on the outside. If this is a kickboxing matchup from the outside, MVP is getting the win at Bellator 258.

Ultimately, I think you’re going to see a mix of both. I think you’ll see these two in the clinch some, but I also expect a lot of distance striking. In the end, I think it’s a closer fight than some thing, but MVP edges this one by landing the more significant shots.

Prediction: Michael “Venom” Page by Unanimous Decision

Bellator books Michael “Venom” Page – Derek Anderson

Bellator has finalized a big time welterweight matchup for one of their upcoming cards. ESPN’s Ariel Helwani was the first to report today that the promotion had finalized a matchup between Michael “Venom” Page (18-1) and Derek Anderson (17-3, 1 NC).

The matchup will take place on the main card at Bellator 258 on May 7th. Originally, these two men were supposed to meet back in 2017. However, MVP was forced out of the matchup and they haven’t been rescheduled until now.

Derek Anderson will enter the Bellator cage on May 7th having gone 5-1 in his last six matchups. The lone loss came to Derek Campos by decision, but after that loss, Anderson has won three fights in a row.

The last time we saw Anderson was at Bellator 251 in November. Anderson took on Killys Mota and was able to win with a second round soccer kick for the knockout. He’s looked very impressive over his last few wins.

The one issue with Anderson has been his activity level. As mentioned, he’s gone 5-1 in his last six Bellator matchups, but those spanned over five years. Hopefully we will start to see Derek Anderson be a little more active moving forward.

Bellator 258 Welterweight Matchup

Michael “Venom” Page is one of the flashiest fighters that Bellator has. He’s got a very interesting striking style and he goes for techniques you normally don’t see in a MMA matchup.

However, his style led to his one loss against Douglas Lima back in 2019 by knockout. Since that knockout loss at Bellator 221, MVP has gone 4-0. The last time we saw him was at Bellator 248 last October.

Page took on Ross Houston in that matchup. MVP had a lot of momentum leading into that fight having won three straight by knockout. However, the Houston fight failed to live up to expectations. MVP still got the decision, but fans were not thrilled with the performance.

You have to think that the Bellator welterweight is going to look to make a statement on May 7th. If he’s able to get a win in a few weeks, it might be time that he gets another crack at the welterweight title.

Bellator 247 loses it’s main event despite Paul Daley’s claims

Bellator 247 was dealt a crushing blow this morning. The promotion is set to host an event from Milan, Italy tomorrow, but due to a weight cutting issue, the main event was said to be cancelled. Paul Daley (41-17-2) missed weight by 2.6 pounds and got sick from the weight cut.

This morning, Daley was said to have been taken to the hospital after his failed weight cut. English MMA reporter Gareth A Davies first tweeted out about Daley not coming back for the ceremonial face offs after the weigh ins. Bellator officials told Ariel Helwani that the fight was cancelled.

However, Daley has since responded to the media claiming that all of the reports are false. Daley posted an Instagram video saying that he was back at the fighter hotel and received no medical treatment. He also said that his opponent, Derek Anderson (16-3), has accepted the fight.

Bellator 247 Main Event

The entire situation is odd. You have Bellator officials who have confirmed that the fight was off, but Daley has come out saying it’s not true. I’m not sure why Daley would post a video like that if the fight was not taking place. However, since posting the video, Bellator officials once again confirmed the cancellation.

The entire situation is very bizarre. If the fight does take place, it’s a very solid welterweight contest for the promotion. Daley and Anderson are both coming into this contest on two-fight winning streaks.

Anderson is a very well rounded fighter who can get it done on the feet, and he can submit you. He’s won four straight fights by decision with one coming against Patricky Pitbull. However, Anderson hasn’t been extremely active only fighting five times over the last five years due to a number of injuries

Daley of course is known for his elite striking skills. Those striking skills were on display in his last fight where he stopped Saad Awad in the second round of their fight back at Bellator 232. Daley has always struggled against guys who try to wrestle him.

Bellator’s Changing TV Networks

Bellator President Scott Coker made a big announcement today for the promotion. For the last couple of years, the promotion has called the Paramount Network home.

However, starting on October 1st, Bellator will be moving to CBS Sports Network. Tomorrow night will mark the final card that will take place on Paramount for Bellator.

Bellator‘s parent company, ViacomCBS, made the decision to move the promotion over to a network that is focused on sports. This comes on the heels of the Viacom and CBS merger in December.

What it means for Bellator?

Bellator will be making the move on October 1st over the CBS Sports Network. That card will take place from Milan and it will be headlined by Paul Daley (41-17-2) and Derek Anderson (16-3). The next card will be the first major MMA event in France.

Coker said that this move to the CBS Sports network was years in the making. One of the problems that Bellator has ran into in the past was airing live events that were not domestic. With the limitations of Paramount, many times fans couldn’t see the action live.

However, with the move to a dedicated sports network, the promotion will have the full ability to bring fans live fights wherever they are. Coker was asked about Bellator eventually getting a slot on the national CBS channel for some of their big fights.

“What I will say is this is one family (ViacomCBS). I believe that one day we will get there. But for now, CBS Sports Network,” Coker said to the media. This is the smart move by ViacomCBS to get Bellator on a sports driven platform.

This by no means puts them on a competitive level with the UFC and ESPN, but moving to a sports driven network is a great move for Bellator as they continue to look to evolve.