Bellator 231 and Bellator 232 Betting Preview, Odds and Predictions

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This weekend, Bellator returns with two big shows from the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, CT. The first event, Bellator 231, will take place on Friday, October 25th, and features a main heavyweight event of Frank Mir taking on Roy Nelson.

The second event this weekend is Bellator 232 on Saturday, October 26th, and it features a welterweight title fight as Douglas Lima challenges Rory MacDonald for the title. This is also the conclusion of Bellator’s welterweight tournament.

MMA betting sites have listed odds on a few of the fights spread throughout both events. Let’s step inside the betting octagon to examine these odds, identify potential betting value, and KO our picks.

Bellator 231: Mir vs Nelson 2

Bellator 231 is set to begin at 6 PM ET with a nine-fight preliminary card. The five-fight main card won’t start until 9 PM ET, but can be seen live on Paramount or streaming on DAZN.

Frank Mir (18-13) vs Roy Nelson (23-17)

  • Frank Mir (+140)
  • Roy Nelson (-170)

In a fight that’s about five years too late, Frank Mir takes on Roy Nelson in a rematch from their 2011 battle that saw Mir win via unanimous decision at UFC 130.

Since then, Mir has fought 11 times and has gone 3-8. He’s lost eight of his last 10, including four fights in a row. Mir is 0-2 in Bellator with TKO/KO losses to Fedor Emelianenko and Javy Ayala. For his career, Mir has 10 TKO/KO losses.

Since their first fight, Roy Nelson has competed 19 times across two promotions and has gone 8-11. Nelson has lost eight of his last 11 fights, including dropping three straight contests. He’s now 1-3 in Bellator.

I find it hard to see how this fight is main event worthy when Mir is 40 years old, and Nelson is 43 years old, they’re both on significant losing streaks, and neither fighter is a credible heavyweight any longer.

In their first fight, Mir was the betting favorite at -152 odds. He’s now the notable underdog in this rematch. Nelson was a slight underdog at -115 odds and is now a sizable favorite.

Mir no longer has the power to knock out anyone, but Nelson still has a little pop left in those haymakers. Plus, he’s showed toughness by going the distance in four of his last five fights. I believe he will outlast Mir in this rematch and win via unanimous decision or a late-round TKO.

Bellator Bet: Roy Nelson (-170)

Phil Davis (20-5, 1 NC) vs Karl Albrektsson (9-2)

  • Phil Davis (-500)
  • Karl Albrektsson (+375)

Albrektsson is one of the biggest underdogs of the weekend. It’s a role that he has some experience with as he’s been an underdog in several of his big fights over the last three years. He will be making his Bellator debut on Friday and is on a three-fight win streak. Seven of his nine wins have come via stoppage.

Davis bounced back from a loss 11 months ago to score a 3rd round TKO win over Liam McGeary in April. He’s now 3-1 in his last four fights and has improved his Bellator record to 7-2. 10 of his 20 pro wins have come via decision. All five of his losses have come via decision.

Davis hasn’t been an underdog in five years since he fought Glover Teixeira at UFC 179 in October 2014. Since then, he’s been a betting favorite in all of his fights, including both contests against Ryan Bader (2015, 2017).

I have little doubt that Davis will dominate this fight. Albrektsson is a relatively unknown commodity despite fighting in Rizin. I believe Davis will wear out Albrektsson before scoring a TKO or cruising to a unanimous decision. There’s no betting value with Davis and Albrektsson is not worthy of a flier.

Bellator Bet: Phil Davis (-500)

Ed Ruth (7-1) vs Jason Jackson (10-3)

  • Ed Ruth (-300)
  • Jason Jackson (+240)

Jason Jackson is a sizable underdog for this contest, and it’s the first time he’s not a betting favorite in over three years. This will be his second fight with Bellator as he first fought under the banner 14 months ago. After that fight, which he won via TKO, Jackson fought two times in LFA.

Jackson is a decent fighter despite bouncing around different promotions. Seven of his 10 pro wins have come via stoppage. Two of his three losses have come via KO/TKO.

Ed Ruth has spent his entire pro career with Bellator. His lone loss was to Neiman Gracie via submission. That’s not a surprise considering how elite Gracie is on the mat and how average Ruth is. Ed’s strengths are standing and striking, which is evident in his record. Six of his seven pro wins have come via TKO/KO.

In this fight, Ruth has someone that will stand and strike with him. That bodes well for Ruth as he will be able to unload his striking arsenal and come away with another TKO win. Take Ruth to improve to 8-1 and move up the ranks in Bellator.

There’s no value with Ruth and Jackson isn’t worthy of a flier.

Bellator Bet: Ed Ruth (-300)

Bec Rawlings (7-7) vs Ilara Joanne (8-4)

  • Bec Rawlings (-350)
  • Ilara Joanne (+275)

I find it hard to understand how this fight is even on the main card. Rawlings might be the recognizable fighter here, but she’s lost four straight fights, which caused her to lose her job at UFC. Rawlings hasn’t fought in 18 months.

Five of her seven pro wins have come via stoppage with four by way of submission. Six of her eight losses have come via decision. Rawlings has bounced back and forth between being a betting favorite and an underdog over the last five years.

Joanne will be making her Bellator debut, and it’s not going to be an easy one. She’s fought for many regional promotions and has very little to brag about. Six of her eight pro wins have come via stoppage, while half of her losses have come via decision.

I have no confidence in either woman. However, Rawlings has at least fought fair competition. Joanne has fought mostly nobodies. Neither fighter is worthy of a wager, but Rawlings should pick up the win either via submission or decision.

Bellator Bet: Bec Rawlings (-350)

Jake Hager (2-0) vs Anthony Garrett (3-1)

  • Jake Hager (-550)
  • Anthony Garrett (+400)

Make no mistake about it; this fight is all about Jake Hager. Bellator wants to keep handfeeding him opponents that will boost his stock within the company and with the diehard MMA fanbase. Hager is well-known in the pro wrestling world as he was a star with WWE and is now a major player with AEW.

Both of Hager’s wins have come via submission in the 1st round. He’s able to use his strong wrestling background to get his opponents to the mat and then lock in a chokehold for the win. Once again, Hager will be a large betting favorite in his fight. I wouldn’t be surprised if these odds increased by Friday.

Anthony Garrett will make his Bellator debut this weekend and has spent his entire pro career in Shamrock FC. He’s about the same size as Hager, but has no real strengths to boast of.

I will be shocked if this fight goes beyond the 1st round as Garrett isn’t on the same level as Hager in terms of athleticism, power, and explosiveness. Cue the AEW fans as I’m sure Hager and his posse will play up this win as if it was a huge accomplishment.

Bellator Bet: Jake Hager (-550)

Full Bellator 231 Card

The following lineup is according to Bellator.com:

  • Frank Mir (18-13) vs Roy Nelson (23-17)
  • Phil Davis (20-5, 1 NC) vs Karl Albrektsson (9-2)
  • Ed Ruth (7-1) vs Jason Jackson (10-3)
  • Bec Rawlings (7-7) vs Ilara Joanne (8-4)
  • Jake Hager (2-0) vs Anthony Garrett (3-1)
  • Mandel Nallo (7-0) vs Killys Mota (11-1)
  • John Manley (10-5) vs Thiago Oliveira (16-4)
  • Steve Mowry (6-0) vs Gokhan Saricam (3-0)
  • Tim Carson (7-3) vs Lucas Pimenta (8-2)
  • Brandon Medina (0-1) vs Brandon Santiago (0-0)
  • Talita Nogueira (7-1) vs Jessica Miele (8-3)
  • Dalton Rosta (1-0) vs Ahmed Samir Hefny (1-1)
  • Elise Reed (0-0) vs Rebecca Bryggman (0-0)
  • Connor Dixon (1-0) vs Orkhan Ismatzade (0-0)

Bellator 232: Lima vs MacDonald 2

Bellator 232 is set to begin at 6:45 PM ET with a six-fight preliminary card. The six-fight main card won’t start until 10 PM ET, but can be seen live on DAZN.

Rory MacDonald (21-5-1) vs Douglas Lima (31-7)

  • (c)Rory MacDonald (+145)
  • Douglas Lima (-165)

The main event fight of the night is the finals match for the Bellator welterweight grand prix. Not only will the winner conquer the tournament, but he will also walk away with the welterweight championship belt that’s currently around MacDonald’s waist and $1 million.

This world title fight is also a rematch from their January 2018 battle where MacDonald won via unanimous decision in his second contest with Bellator. Rory was a -265 betting favorite and Lima was a +150 underdog. That’s all changed for this weekend’s bout.

Douglas Lima comes into this rematch as the betting favorite with odds ranging from -160 to -190. It’s the third straight fight that he’s been a favorite. Lima has won two straight contests and five of his last six. Since joining the promotion eight years ago, Lima has compiled a record of 13-3.

Other than MacDonald, his other losses have been to Andrey Koreshkov and Ben Askren. In the case of Koreshkov, Lima has gone on to beat him two times since that loss. Twenty-six of his 31 pro wins have come via stoppage with 16 victories by way of TKO/KO.

This will be Lima’s 16th fight in the welterweight division, which is the second-most all-time behind Koreshkov’s 17. It will also be his seventh world title fight, which is the 3rd most in company history. He’s also tied for the most knockout wins (9) with Patricky Freire.

Rory MacDonald has a chance to go down as one of the greatest welterweights of all-time if he can defeat Lima for a second time and win this tournament. He has career wins over Lima, Daley, Woodley, Maia, Nate Diaz, and B.J. Penn when they were all in their primes.

He’s a former UFC title contender and a former KOTC lightweight champion in addition to being the Bellator welterweight champ. Nicknamed, “The Red King,” MacDonald is truly on the cusp of greatness. A win on Saturday will put him right behind GSP as one of the best welterweights of all-time.

With that said, it’s going to be a war for both men like in their 1st battle. MacDonald won via unanimous decision after five tough rounds. I expect this fight to also go five rounds with both men taking a beating.

Fourteen of MacDonald’s 21 pro wins have come via stoppage. He’s 7-2-1 when going the distance with one Draw against John Fitch six months ago. Lima is 5-5 when going the distance.

Speaking of the Fitch fight, who can forget how defeated MacDonald sounded afterward in his post-fight interview. Many fans and pundits thought he was going to retire. Instead, MacDonald came back for his tournament fight against Neiman Gracie in June and won via unanimous decision.

I believe he has the striking skills to hang with Lima and is a better overall grappler. He just went five rounds with a submission specialist in Neiman Gracie and looked strong throughout the fight. Lima blasted MVP with a 2nd round KO, but I don’t see that happening with MacDonald.

Rory will close the distance and make this an ugly fight with clinches, takedowns, and anything else to prevent Lima from striking at a distance and racking up the points.

I take nothing away from Lima as I believe he’s a great fighter. However, I believe MacDonald has the pedigree to become an all-time great, and this tournament victory will give him that title. I’m going with the betting upset by taking the champ, “The Red King,” the soon-to-be all-time great Rory MacDonald to win via split decision.

Bellator Bet: Rory MacDonald (+145)

Paul Daley (41-17-2) vs Saad Awad (23-12)

  • Paul Daley (-400)
  • Saad Awad (+300)

The co-main event of Bellator 232 was supposed to be Daley vs Sabah Homasi, but that changed after Homasi withdrew due to injury. Longtime Bellator veteran Saad Awad stepped up on short notice to take this fight. In my opinion, Awad makes this fight even more entertaining than the original booking.

Saad Awad is on a three-fight losing streak after putting together four wins in a row. He’s been with Bellator since January 2013 and has a record of 11-8 with the promotion. He last fought three weeks ago and lost via submission in 100 seconds of his fight against Goiti Yamauchi. Awad succumbed to an armbar.

Awad won’t have to worry about any submission holds in this fight. It’s going to be all about who can land the most power shots and who has the tougher chin. Seventeen of his 23 pro wins have come via stoppage with 10 by way of TKO/KO.

Daley is purely a knockout artist with many highlight-reel finishes in his portfolio. Surprisingly, he’s gone the distance in three straight fights. Daley returned to Bellator in February 2015 and has gone 6-4 since then. He won his last fight four months ago via unanimous decision over Erick Silva. It snapped a two-fight skid.

Over the last three years, Daley’s losses have come to the cream of the crop like: MVP, Fitch, MacDonald and Lima. Although Awad is a solid fighter, he’s not on that level. I expect this fight to end via TKO and with Daley’s hand being raised when it’s all said and done. Look for Daley to pick up the 33rd TKO/KO in his career.

There’s no betting value with Daley and Awad is a very risky flier due to his puncher’s chance.

Bellator Bet: Paul Daley (NA)

Patrick Mix (11-0) vs Isaiah Chapman (7-3)

  • Patrick Mix (-425)
  • Isaiah Chapman (+325)

Undefeated bantamweight contender Patrick Mix was initially set to take on Dominic Mazzotta this weekend, but that fight was scrapped after Mazzotta had to withdraw from the contest. Isaiah Chapman has stepped up to take this fight.

It’s no surprise that Chapman is a large underdog considering this is his first fight in Bellator. His odds are as high as +422 with some sports betting sites. Chapman is on a three-fight winning streak and recently competed with World Series of Fighting. So, he does have some skills.

Unfortunately, he’s going up against a fighter on the verge of stardom. Mix continues to pummel everyone in his path no matter what promotion he’s fought in. From KOTC to Bellator, Mix continues to steamroll his foes.

Mix made his Bellator debut in June and crushed Ricky Bandejas via 1st round submission just 66 seconds into the fight. It was a huge statement win for the newcomer as it announced to the rest of the division that he has arrived.

Eight of his 11 pro wins have come via stoppage with seven by way of submission. Mix has submitted five of his last six opponents, and I see him getting another submission win this weekend. If you can find a prop bet for Mix to win by submission, then take it. Otherwise, neither fighter offers value.

Bellator Bet: Patrick Mix (-425)

Vitaly Minakov (22-1) vs Javy Ayala (11-7)

  • Vitaly Minakov (-500)
  • Javy Ayala (+375)

Javy Ayala is a large underdog anywhere from +375 to +500, depending on the sports betting site. It’s the 4th time he’s been an underdog in his last five fights. The only time he was a betting favorite was when he took on Frank Mir last December and won.

That TKO victory over Mir snapped a two-fight losing streak where he dropped bouts to Cheick Kongo and Roy Nelson. Ayala is 6-4 under the Bellator banner. Ten of his 11 pro wins have come via stoppage with six victories by way of KO/TKO.

Vitaly Minakov is a former Bellator champ who first left the promotion due to contract issues. He returned in February after a five-year absence and lost to Cheick Kongo. Minakov quickly bounced back two months ago by defeating Timothy Johnson via 1st round KO.

You would have to go back nearly a decade to find Minakov as an underdog. His odds for this fight range from -500 to -550. Twenty of his 22 pro wins have come via stoppage with 13 victories by way of TKO/KO. I believe he picks up his 14th TKO win this weekend as Ayala has lost four fights via TKO/KO.

Bellator Bet: Vitaly Minakov (-500)

Robin Van Roosmalen (2-0) vs Cris Lencioni (5-2)

  • Robin Van Roosmalen (-205)
  • Cris Lencioni (+165)

Robin Van Roosmalen is making his promotional debut this weekend after a 31-month hiatus from MMA. He comes from a kickboxing background with a record of 51-18. He’s also a former Glory featherweight and lightweight champion. Both of his MMA wins have come via TKO.

Chris Lencioni has been with Bellator for almost two years with a record of 2-2 under the banner. He snapped a two-fight losing streak with a win five months ago. Three of his wins have come via submission.

This is an exciting matchup as Lencioni prefers to get this fight to the mat, but RVR loves to kick someone’s head off. The odds favor RVR in this fight, but I do see Lencioni being worthy of a small flier since he has the advantage on the mat.

Odds are that RVR will win via TKO, but if you are desperate for a longshot risky pick, then throw a small wager on Lencioni to win via submission.

Bellator Bet: Robin Van Roosmalen (-205)

Nick Newell (16-2) vs Luis Muro (6-5)

  • Nick Newell (NA)
  • Luis Muro (NA)

Muro is fighting under the Bellator banner for the second time in his career as his first bout came two years ago. However, he’s nothing more than a warm body for Newell to beat up on. Muro has gone 3-6 in his last nine fights despite winning his Bellator debut.

Five of his seven pro wins have come via decision. Four of his six pro losses have come via stoppage. I expect him to suffer his 7th pro loss on Friday.

Newell, despite having one hand, is on a two-fight win streak, including his Bellator debut in August. He’s looking to close out 2019 strong and continue to move up the ladder:

“I do this for the sport and the passion I have to be the best version of myself. I’ve always been super motivated. Now that I’m on a big stage I feel like I’m ready to rise to the occasion and make a run at the top dogs in Bellator.”

Eleven of his 16 pro wins have come via submission. Two of Muro’s losses have come via submission. As you can guess, I believe he will pick up his 12th submission win this weekend. He’s fought tougher competition and appears to be on the rise. Muro has very little to show for his time in MMA.

Bellator Bet: Nick Newell (NA)

Full Bellator 232: Lima vs MacDonald Card

The following lineup is according to Bellator.com:

  • Rory MacDonald (21-5-1) vs Douglas Lima (31-7)
  • Paul Daley (41-17-2) vs Saad Awad (23-12)
  • Patrick Mix (11-0) vs Isaiah Chapman (7-3)
  • Vitaly Minakov (22-1) vs Javy Ayala (11-7)
  • Nick Newell (16-2) vs Luis Muro (6-5)
  • Lance Gibson (2-0) vs Dominic Jones (1-1)
  • Devin Powell (8-4) vs Marcus Surin (6-1)
  • Zarrukh Adashev (2-1) vs Tevin Dyce (2-1)
  • Robin Van Roosmalen (2-0) vs Cris Lencioni (5-2)
  • Tom Connolly (1-0) vs Ryan Hardy Evans (0-1)
  • John Douma (4-1) vs Jornel Lugo (1-0)
  • Jonny Lopez (9-4) vs Dan Cormier (5-7-1)

Final Thoughts on Bellator 231 and 232

Other than Jake Hager and Phil Davis, there’s nothing I want to see on Bellator 231. I don’t understand why Bellator doesn’t have most of that main card as undercard fights for the Bellator 232 lineup and make it one big event. Hager will draw in the pro wrestling fans, but the Mir vs Nelson fight is a complete dud.

As for Bellator 232, I’m very excited about this show. The main event fight between Rory MacDonald and Douglas Lima is going to be a hit with fans and critics alike. History will be made once that fight is complete, and I can’t wait.

There’s plenty of betting opportunities with these Bellator cards. From underdogs and fliers to betting value and favorites, MMA bettors will have chances to make a decent amount of money.

With these two Bellator cards, the huge Prograis vs Taylor boxing event, and the UFC from Singapore, fight fans will have plenty of action all weekend long.

Rick Rockwell

As a longtime freelance writer, avid sports fan, former athlete, and experienced sports bettor, Rick Rockwell has risen up the ranks at GamblingSites.org to become the self-professed "King of the Blog" in his first year with the site. ...

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