According to a May 2 report from MMA Junkie, Joe "The Baddest Man on the Planet" Warren (11-3) bounced back from some early adversity in his world title fight against hard-hitting Brazilian standout Rafael Silva (21-4) to taste victory in the main event of Bellator 118. The event, which went down at Revel Casino and Hotel in Atlantic City, also featured a highlight-reel knockout from Andrey Koreshkov in the co-main.
Warren, 37, was rocked in the opening frame by some stiff uppercuts that landed flush on his chin. However, he rallied back with several takedowns in the second and third rounds. Warren picked up the pace in the fourth and fifth rounds, as Silva began to fade. The judges scored it 48-47, all in Warren's favor.
The Bellator 118 co-main was expected to be a lopsided affair, especially after Sam Oropeza dropped off the card less than a day before the show. Justin Baesman stepped in for Oropeza on less than a week's notice. Koreshkov (16-1 MMA, 7-1 Bellator) was a 25-to-1 favorite to beat Baesman (14-5-1 MMA, 0-2-1 Bellator), and it didn't take long for fans to find out why.
Koreshkov landed a ridiculous flying knee to earn a ref stoppage at the 1:41 mark of the first round. Koreshkov, one of Bellator's fast-rising stars, advances to a fight against Adam McDonough in the Bellator Season 10 welterweight tournament finals.
In the swing fight of the Bellator 118 main card, Marcos Galvao (16-6-1 MMA, 7-3 Bellator) earned a unanimous-decision victory over promotional newcomer Thomas Vasquez (7-1 MMA, 4-1 BMMA). Galvao avoided Vasquez's power shots by consistently working for takedowns, which undoubtedly helped him on the judges' scorecards. All three judges had it 30-27 in Galvao's favor.
Bellator 118's main card opened with a highlight-reel finish by British knockout artist Liam McGeary (7-0 MMA, 4-0 Bellator). The striker's opponent, Mike Mucitelli (6-1 MMA, 4-1 Bellator), was caught by a left hook that sent him flailing to the mat. The end came at the 22-second mark of the opening stanza.
The Bellator 118 preliminary card featured plenty of exciting action in several different divisions. Kevin Roddy opened the card with a decision victory over Amran Aliyev, and Sidney Outlaw remained undefeated with a decision win over Mike Bannon. The first finish of the evening occured in the third fight of the night, as Lester Caslow stopped Jay Haas with a guillotine in the opening frame.
Darrion Caldwell did a celebratory backflip after defeating Joe Pingitore via rear-naked choke, and the opening card also saw Jesus Martinez, Tim Woods and Dante Rivera reign supreme.