Bellator 109 kicked off tonight on Spike TV, which featured a middleweight championship between Alexander Shlemenko and Doug Marshall. Both fighters were known for their standup, but it was Shlemenko who was able to execute brilliantly tonight. Early in the fight, Alexander threatened with takedowns, forcing Marshall to keep his guard up.
Then, Alexander would land some beautiful shots to the body that finally added up. Marshall wasn’t able to continue after a flurry, allowing Shlemenko to retain his middleweight belt. It was a striking exhibition for Alexander tonight, and yes, he may not have one-punch knockout power, but he certainly can make his strikes add up. He was very accurate with his strikes tonight.
Shlemenko proved to be too much for Marshall tonight, and this may have been Marshall’s last shot at a title for a big MMA promotion. Up next for Shlemenko is a bout with Brennan Ward, which has the makings to be an instant classic under the Bellator promotion. Both Ward and Shlemenko love to stand and trade, and if there’s one thing for certain, this championship bout will not go all five rounds.
Congrats to Shlemenko on the impressive victory, who brings his record to an impressive 49-7. He’s one of the most experienced fighters under the Bellator banner, and he is currently on a 12-fight winning streak. It’s going to be hard for any fighter to dethrone Shlemenko, which was very clear tonight. He dominated Marshall on the feet, proving he’s got the ability to finish when given the opportunity.