Bellator 2016: A Year in Review
By many accounts 2016 was the best year in Bellator’s history. Marking it’s 8th year in the industry, 2016 gave us 22 Bellator MMA events and 2 Bellator Kickboxing events. For Bellator, it wasn’t just the massive event schedule that made this past year such a success for them. They made plenty of news at the signing table, as well as having some of the most epic battles in MMA. Let’s take a quick look at the year in review for Bellator.
With free agency in MMA becoming more and more interesting now that there are a few promotions to do business with, Bellator made a play in the market in a huge way. Their list of signees this past year included some of the biggest names in the sport – Benson Henderson, Matt Mitrione, Rory MacDonald, and all-time great heavyweight Fedor Emelianenko.
Not to be outdone by the influx of big names, some of Bellators cornerstone competitors had banner years of their own. Michael “Venom” page had a 3-win year extending his record to 12-0 and producing one of the most lethal knockouts in quite sometime. Michael Chandler not only won the Bellator lightweight championship but he successfully defended it against Benson Henderson in a great 5-round battle. And Phil Davis knocked off two of the biggest names in the light heavyweight division when he defeated King Mo and then finished his year by taking the light heavyweight strap from Liam McGeary.
All told it was an exciting year for Bellator and was just a taste of things to come in 2017. Bellator 170 comes to us January 21st from the LA Forum where Tito Ortiz and Chael Sonnen look to settle their score. Kudos to Scott Coker and the promotion on a great year of mixed martial arts.
Enjoy this video of Bellator 2016: