Who does the MMASucka staff see moving on in Bellator’s heavyweight tournament?

The weekend is here and so are the MMASucka Staff picks. In the second weekend of October, we are brought two outstanding Bellator cards. Bellator 207 and 208 features more than a good portion of intriguing matchups as the Heavyweight Grand Prix continues. By both events end, the finalists for the tournament will be decided.

In the first semi-final matchup at Bellator 207, Matt Mitrione takes on light heavyweight champion, Ryan Bader. The action goes down live on Paramount Network from the familiar Mohegan Sun Resort and Casino. Chael Sonnen takes on the infamous Fedor Emelianenko in the main event of Bellator 208. Saturdays Bellator 208 takes place at the Nassau Coliseum.

The first of the Heavyweight Grand Prix matchups pits two former UFC contenders against each. Ryan Bader made a career resurgence upon leaving the UFC and joining the Bellator roster in free agency. During his time with the UFC, Bader routinely found himself at the top of the light heavyweight division rankings. Yet, when given opportunities to earn a top contender spot, he failed.

Bader vs. Mitrione

Once with Bellator, Bader was granted a title shot at then champion, Phil Davis at Madison Square Garden for the PPV event, Bellator NYC. The Arizona State University wrestler edged by the defending champion, earning a split decision victory and the light heavyweight title.

Matt Mitrione had a similar experience. The Ultimate Fighter Season 10 star had mountains of success thus far inside the Bellator cage. In four career bouts with the organization, Mitrione is undefeated with three stoppage victories.

Sonnen vs. Fedor

Saturday’s matchup has the feel of something wild. The always entertaining and outspoken, Chael Sonnen continues his quest for a major MMA title when he takes on ‘The Last Emperor’, Fedor Emelianenko.

Sonnen faces another mixed martial arts legend when he makes the walk Saturday. His opponents in Bellator have all held that moniker. ‘The American Gangster’ fought Tito Ortiz, Wanderlei Silva, and Rampage Jackson respectively during his time with the promotion.

Fedor Emelianenko is the only competitor left in the Grand Prix who has never competed under the UFC banner. While the Octagon may not be in his past, Emelianenko is one of a few high-profile signings over the past few years, put on display by Bellator in the Heavyweight Grand Prix. Signings such as Roy Nelson, Chael Sonnen, Matt Mitrione, and Ryan Bader.

Staff Picks

The WINNER of staff picks will have a chance to receive a custom-made championship belt from ProAmBelts following completion of the 2018 calendar year! The 2017 winner was awarded to Wesley Riddle, compiling a record of 118-74 for main card fights. Staff picks compose of both Bellator and UFC fights taken place on the main card.

Check out our MMASucka staff picks for Bellator 207 & 208, as well as our current compiled records through 2018.

Bellator Staff Picks


Staff Records after UFC 229

  1. Michael DeSantis: 150-66
  2. Ryan Wagner: 145-71
  3. Wesley Riddle: 141-75
  4. Mitchell Banuelos: 140-76
  5. Omar Villagrana: 136-80
  6. 6T. Mike Skytte: 124-92
  7. 6T. Ed Gallo: 121-95
  8. Jeremy Brand: 122-85
  9. Justin Pierrot: 102-90
  10. Matt Bricker: 69-41
  11. Brian Gerson: 67-54
  12. Suraj Sukumar: 37-26
  13. Connor Deitrich: 24-10


Carrington Banks (7-1) vs. Mandel Nallo (6-0)

Jeremy Brand: Nallo via Round 2 TKO
Wesley Riddle:
Mike Skytte: Banks via UD
Justin Pierrot: Nallo via UD
Michael DeSantis: Banks via UD
Ryan Wagner: Banks via UD
Mitchell Banuelos: Banks via UD
Ed Gallo: Banks via UD
Omar Villagrana: Banks via UD
Brian Gerson: Banks via UD
Matt Bricker: Hallo via Round 1 SUB
Connor Deitrich: Banks via UD
Suraj Sukumar: Banks via UD

Staff Picking Banks: 9
Staff Picking Hallo: 3


Kevin Ferguson Jr. aka Baby Slice (3-1) vs. Corey Browning (3-2)

Jeremy Brand: Baby Slice via Round 1 TKO
Wesley Riddle:
Mike Skytte: Baby Slice via Round 1 SUB
Justin Pierrot: Baby Slice via Round 2 TKO
Michael DeSantis: Baby Slice via Round 1 TKO
Ryan Wagner: Baby Slice via Round 1 TKO
Mitchell Banuelos: Baby Slice via Round 1 TKO
Ed Gallo: Baby Slice via Round 2 SUB
Omar Villagrana: Baby Slice via UD
Brian Gerson: Baby Slice via Round 1 TKO
Matt Bricker: Baby Slice via Round 1 TKO
Connor Deitrich: Baby Slice via Round 1 TKO
Suraj Sukumar: Baby Slice via Round 1 TKO

Staff Picking Baby Slice: 12
Staff Picking Browning: 0


Lorenz Larkin (19-7) vs. Ion Pascu (18-8)

Jeremy Brand: Larkin via Round 1 TKO
Wesley Riddle:
Mike Skytte: Larkin via UD
Justin Pierrot: Larkin via UD
Michael DeSantis: Larkin via UD
Ryan Wagner: Larkin via UD
Mitchell Banuelos: Larkin via Round 2 TKO
Ed Gallo: Larkin via Round 3 TKO #StayChoppin
Omar Villagrana: Larkin via UD
Brian Gerson: Larkin via UD
Matt Bricker: Larkin via UD
Connor Deitrich: Larkin via Round 3 TKO
Suraj Sukumar: Larkin via UD

Staff Picking Larkin: 12
Staff Picking Pascu: 0


Roy Nelson (23-15) vs. Sergei Kharitonov (28-7)

Jeremy Brand: Kharitonov via UD
Wesley Riddle:
Mike Skytte: Kharitonov via Round 1 TKO
Justin Pierrot: Kharitonov via SD
Michael DeSantis: Nelson via UD
Ryan Wagner: Nelson via UD
Mitchell Banuelos: Nelson via UD
Ed Gallo: Hoy Nelson via UD
Omar Villagrana: Nelson via UD
Brian Gerson: Nelson via UD
Matt Bricker: Kharitonov via SD
Connor Deitrich: Big Belly Roy via Round 2 KO
Suraj Sukumar: Kharitonov via Round 3 TKO

Staff Picking for Nelson: 7
Staff Picking for Kharitonov: 5


Matt Mitrione (13-5) vs. Ryan Bader (25-5)

Matt Mitrione vs. Ryan Bader
Jeremy Brand: Mitrione via Round 2 TKO
Wesley Riddle:
Mike Skytte: Bader via Round 3 TKO
Justin Pierrot: Bader via Round 2 TKO
Michael DeSantis: Darth Bader Round 3 TKO
Ryan Wagner: Bader via UD
Mitchell Banuelos: Bader via UD
Ed Gallo: Bader via UD
Omar Villagrana: Bader via UD
Brian Gerson: Mitrione via Round 1 TKO
Matt Bricker: Bader via Round 1 TKO
Connor Deitrich: Bader via Round 2 TKO
Suraj Sukumar: Bader via Round 1 TKO

Staff Picking Bader: 10
Staff Picking Mitrione: 2



Henry Corrales (15-3) vs. Andy Main (12-3-1)

Jeremy Brand: Main via Round 2 SUB
Wesley Riddle:
Mike Skytte: Corrales via Round 1 TKO
Justin Pierrot: Corrales via UD
Michael DeSantis:
Ryan Wagner: Corrales via UD
Mitchell Banuelos: Corrales via UD
Ed Gallo: Corrales via UD
Omar Villagrana: Corrales via UD
Brian Gerson: Main via Round 2 TKO
Matt Bricker: Corrales via UD
Connor Deitrich: Corrales via Round 2 TKO
Suraj Sukumar: Corrales via UD

Staff Picking Corrales: 9
Staff Picking Main: 2


Cheick Kongo (28-10-2) vs. Timothy Johnson (12-4)

Cheick Kongo vs. Timothy Johnson
Jeremy Brand: Kongo via UD
Wesley Riddle:
Mike Skytte: Johnson via UD
Justin Pierrot: Johnson via UD
Michael DeSantis:
Ryan Wagner: Johnson via UD
Mitchell Banuelos: Johnson via UD
Ed Gallo: Johnson via UD
Omar Villagrana: Johnson via UD
Brian Gerson: Kongo via Round 1 TKO
Matt Bricker: Kongo via Round 1 KO
Connor Deitrich: Kongo via UD
Suraj Sukumar: Kongo via UD

Staff Picking Johnson: 7
Staff Picking Kongo: 5


Alexander Shlemenko (57-11) vs. Anatoly Tokov (26-3)

Jeremy Brand: Shlemenko via Round 3 TKO
Wesley Riddle:
Mike Skytte: Tokov via Round 2 TKO
Justin Pierrot: Shlemenko via UD
Michael DeSantis:
Ryan Wagner: Tokov via UD
Mitchell Banuelos: Tokov via Round 2 TKO
Ed Gallo: Tokov via UD
Omar Villagrana: Tokov via UD
Brian Gerson: Shlemenko via Round 2 TKO
Matt Bricker: Tokov via Round 3 TKO
Connor Deitrich: Tokov via UD
Suraj Sukumar: Tokov via Round 3 TKO

Staff Picking Shlemenko: 3
Staff Picking Tokov: 8


Benson Henderson (25-8) vs. Saad Awad (23-9)

Jeremy Brand: Henderson via Round 2 SUB
Wesley Riddle:
Mike Skytte: Henderson via SD
Justin Pierrot: Henderson via UD
Michael DeSantis:
Ryan Wagner: Henderson via UD
Mitchell Banuelos: Henderson via UD
Ed Gallo: Henderson via UD
Omar Villagrana: Henderson via UD
Brian Gerson: Awad via UD
Matt Bricker: Awad via UD
Connor Deitrich: Henderson via UD
Suraj Sukumar: Henderson via UD

Staff Picking Henderson: 9
Staff Picking Awad: 2


Fedor Emelianenko (37-5) vs. Chael Sonnen (30-15-1)

Jeremy Brand: Sonnen via UD
Wesley Riddle:
Mike Skytte: Fedor via Round 1 KO
Justin Pierrot: Sonnen via UD
Michael DeSantis:
Ryan Wagner: Fedor via Round 1 KO, I guess?
Mitchell Banuelos: Sonnen via UD
Ed Gallo: Sonnen via UD, then we all cry
Omar Villagrana: Sonnen via UD
Brian Gerson: Fedor via Round 1 KO
Matt Bricker: Sonnen via SD
Connor Deitrich: Uncle Chael via UD <3
Suraj Sukumar: Sonnen via UD

Staff Picking Fedor: 3
Staff Picking Sonnen: 8


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