We’ll get to Bellator 224 in a moment, but first, Chad Mendes, who last fought in December during UFC 232, has retired from mixed martial arts as a competitor.
Mendes lost to Alexander Volkanovski during the pay-per-view.
When he announced his retirement, he was quoted as saying: “I wanted to step away for a little bit and let everything settle, just make sure my feelings didn’t change. And they haven’t.”
We wish Mendes the best going forward.
Bellator MMA returns this Friday night to Thackerville, OK’s Winstar World Casino for Bellator 224.
The Undercard action begins at 6:45 p.m. EDT/3:45 PDT on DAZN and the Bellator mobile app. The main card airs and beings streaming at 9 p.m. EDT/6 PDT on Paramount Network and DAZN.
Highlighting the four-fight main card is a battle for the Bellator MMA Women’s Featherweight Championship.
In the main event, incumbent champion Julia Budd (12-2) meets challenger Olga Rubin (6-0) in a five-round fight.
Heading into the main event on Friday evening, both contenders stand at 5-foot-8. Both contenders enter the main event posting 5-0 records in their last five MMA appearances.
For champion Julia Budd, her last victory occurred on July 13, 2018 during the Bellator 202 main event. It was a third-round knockout (ground and pound strikes) of Talita Nogueira.
By the time the main event begins on Friday night, Budd will have gone 364 days between fights.
In the other corner, challenger Olga Rubin’s last win occurred on Feb. 23 during Bellator 217. That was a unanimous decision against Iony Razafiarison.
The Tale of the Tape:
Tapology shows that both contestants in the Friday evening championship fight possess a 69-inch reach.
Prediction: Julia Budd by second-round TKO.
Three other fights make up the Friday night main card:
Rafael Carvalho (15-3) vs. Chidi Njokuani (18-5) [Middleweight, co-main event]
Juliana Velazquez (8-0) vs. Kristina Williams (3-1) [Women’s Flyweight]
Ed Ruth (6-1) vs. Kuchi Kunimoto (20-7-2) [Welterweight]
Bellator 224 at a Glance:
Prelims: Friday, 6:45 p.m. EDT/3:45 PDT, Bellator app and DAZN
Main Card: Friday, 9 p.m. EDT/6 PDT, Paramount Network and DAZN.
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