Two new title-contenders emerged tonight at Bellator 94 thanks to tournament finals between David Rickels-Saad Awad and Emanuel Newton-Mikhail Zayats. The first pair faced off for the right to face lightweight champion Michael Chandler, while the winner of the latter earned a tilt with 205-pound king Attila Vegh.
The 14-4 Awad entered the ring with victories in his last six scraps including first-frame finishes in four. However, he was the one being put away this time around albeit in controversial fashion. Rickels landed a series of stiff shots at the end of the second stanza including one leaving Awad on the mat. While he didn’t jump back up after the bell, Award appeared able to continue and wasn’t prompted to return to an upright position by the official. Unfortunately, the referee still ruled Awad was out and waved off the clash. The knockout win improved Rickels record to 14-1.
On the other side of things, no sort of stoppage came into play though the two certainly battled it out for the duration of their duel. The match-up was fairly even going into the final frame when Newton landed a perfectly-timed punch sending Zayats to the canvas. Though the Russian recovered, the sequence was enough to push “The Hardcore Kid” over the edge on the scorecards and ultimately earn him a Unanimous Decision win.
Read below for a full list of Bellator 94 winners/losers:
Felice Herrig def. Heather Clark via Split Decision
Patrick Cenoble vs. Tony Fryklund – Draw
Edson Berton def. Bruno Carvalho via Submission Round 1 (Heel Hook)
Joe Taimango def. Shah Bobonis via Submission Round 2 (North-South Choke)
Jessica Aguilar vs. Patricia Vidonic via Split Decision
Augusto Sakai def. Rob Horton via TKO Round 2 (Strikes)
Julien Williams def. Kenny Moss via Submission Round 1 (Standing Guillotine Choke)
Rodrigo Lima def. Ronnie Mann via Unanimous Decision
Luis Melo def. Trey Houston via Submission Round 3 (Arm-Triangle Choke)
David Rickels def. Saad Awad via Knockout Round 2 (Strikes)
Emanuel Newton def. Mikhail Zayats via Unanimous Decision