Bellator 114 set With Alexander Shlemenko vs. Brennan Ward Main Event
Posted by Dan Plunkett on 01.15.2014
For the middleweight title...
Middleweight champion Alexander Shlemenko, riding a 12-fight win streak, headlines Bellator 114 on Friday, March 28 with a title defense against Brennan Ward. Bellator announced the bout via press release on Wednesday.
The 29-year-old Shlemenko captured Bellator's vacant middleweight crown by defeating Maiquel Falcao last February and made two successful title defenses before the end of the year. Ward rebounded from a quick submission loss at the start of the year to become Bellator's top middleweight contender by the close of 2013. He emerged victorious from season nine's middleweight tournament, finishing all three of his opponents in the second round.
"I saw Brennan Ward in the last tournament, he was impressive," Shlemenko noted. "But he is a young fighter, while I have experience on my side. My experience will be my strongest weapon in this fight."
"Simply put, I'm looking forward to bringing the heat and taking the belt away. Cold War style," Brennan stated, perhaps revealing his vision of the fight being that of him and Shlemenko angrily staring at each other from across the cage but ultimately doing nothing.
Also announced for the card was the retirement match of Rad Martinez, who will face Edson Berto. Martinez rose to prominence after a June 2011 edition ESPN' sOutside the Lines featured his story as his paraplegic father's caretaker. At that point carrying a 9-2 record, Martinez was signed to Bellator and last year made it to the finals of season eight's featherweight tournament, where he fell to Shahbulat Shamhalaev.
Bellator 114 takes place on March 28, 2014, from the Maverik Center in West Valley City, Utah, and will air live on Spike TV.