Bellator 257: Corey Anderson defeated Dovletdzhan Yagshimuradov to advance to the Bellator light heavyweight Grand Prix semifinal.
Corey Anderson defeated Dovletdzhan Yagshimuradov via TKO, Round 3 – 2:15 at Bellator 257 on Friday, April 16, 2021, live from the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, CT.
“Corey that was impressive, you came in here and imposed your will. Now you got me,” said Ryan Bader, who was brought into the cage by John McCarthy in the post-fight interview. Bader defeated Lyoto Machida at Bellator 256 in the opening night of the tournament and will face Anderson in the semifinal.
.@CoreyA_MMA and Yagshimuradov trying to find their range early on.
— BellatorMMA (@BellatorMMA) April 17, 2021
Yagshimuradov made his introduction to Anderson and the Bellator audience with an uppercut in the opening minute. The two traded leg kicks. Anderson went for a takedown but Yagshimuradov was able to get up against the fence and defend it. From the clinch, each fighter landed knees to the quads. Yagshimuradov landed a short uppercut that led to the break. The two fighters continued to move and throw kicks but had the majority blocked.
The second round saw both fighters move and trade punches. Yagshimuradov landed a big right hand. Anderson changed levels and go for another takedown. Yagshimuradov was able to get up against the fence to defend himself but eventually, Anderson scored the takedown. Anderson was able to move into full mount. Yagshimuradov turned to get in as tight to Anderson’s body as possible but Anderson reigned down punches and elbows. Anderson closed the round with several violent elbows. Yagshimuradov was able to roll away from danger and survive to the horn.
Anderson brought the fight to Yagshimuradov in the third round, sensing his opponent might not have fully recovered. Anderson took down Yagshimuradov and landed several left hands as he battled for positioning. Eventually, Anderson moved into full mount and landed several nasty strikes and elbows. Yagshimuradov attempted to roll away but gave up his back. Anderson relentlessly attacked with his ground and pound, forcing referee Mike Beltran to stop the fight.
Anderson won his Bellator debut, knocking out Melvin Meinhof at Bellator 251. In his previous six fights, Anderson won five times. The lone loss for Anderson came against current UFC light heavyweight champions Jan Błachowicz.
Yagshimuradov was the biggest wildcard entering the Bellator light heavyweight Grand Prix. After winning his previous eight fights, Yagshimuradov made his Bellator debut on Friday.
Bellator 257 took place on Friday, April 16, 2021, live from the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, CT. Follow along with FanSided for all your live news and highlights.