On Friday, July 24th, Bellator returns to action for the first time since late-February with Bellator 242: Bandejas vs Pettis live from the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut. The main event of the night is a bantamweight matchup between UFC veteran Sergio Pettis and the upset minded Ricky Bandejas.
Also on the card are other notable names like Tywan Claxton, Aaron Pico, and Jordan Mein. In total, there are seven fights scheduled for this event. Bellator 242’s main card is set to begin at 10 PM ET and air on both Paramount TV and DAZN.
Bellator betting sites have released odds for the entire Bellator 242 main card. Let’s step inside the betting octagon to examine these Bellator odds, identify potential betting value, and knee-bar these predictions.
Bellator 242 features three fights on the preliminary card, which is set to begin at 8:45 PM ET on DAZN and YouTube. As of this publication, there are no available betting odds for these prelim fights.
Ras Hylton vs Rudy Schaffroth
This fight was originally scheduled to take place between Shaffroth and Steve Mowry, but that all changed when Mowry tested positive for Covid-19. He’s been replaced with Ras Hylton, provided that Hylton passes Covid testing throughout the week.
Hylton is a regional fighter from the New England area. He’s a 6’6 heavyweight with a karate background and has yet to go to a decision.
Rudy Schaffroth will be making his 4th fight with Bellator this week and is coming off the first loss of his career when he tapped out to a rear-naked choke in the 2nd round of his fight against Tyrell Fortune 11 months ago.
Rudy Schaffroth has also never gone the distance in a fight. Five of his six pro wins have come via TKO/KO.
It’s hard to imagine Rudy Schaffroth losing this fight. He’s a better striker than Hylton and I expect that to show in this heavyweight contest. I’m taking Shaffroth to win via TKO/KO.
Ras Hylton vs Rudy Schaffroth –Schaffroth (NA)
Raufeon Stots vs Cass Bell
Cass Bell is undefeated in his young career with all five fights coming in Bellator. He last competed in December 2019 and won via unanimous decision. Four of his five pro wins have come via stoppage with three by way of submission. This is a big step up in competition for Bell.
Stots has won five straight fights including three in LFA and one in Bellator, which came last December. That was also Stots’ last pro bout. He has almost three times as many fights as Bell does and has competed in several legitimate promotions.
I think Stots’ experience and overall skillset will be too much for Bell to handle. I’m taking Stots to win via decision as seven of his 13 pro wins have come via the scorecards.
Raufeon Stots vs Cass Bell –Schaffroth (NA)
Jake Smith vs Mark Lemminger
This welterweight contest was originally scheduled to be Logan Storley taking on Mark Lemminger. However, Storley suffered an injury last week and pulled out of the fight. Jake Smith has stepped in on less than a week’s notice.
Smith has two fights under the Bellator umbrella with a record of 1-1. He last fought 10 months ago and lost via 2nd round submission to Adam Piccolotti. Five of his seven wins have come via TKO/KO.
Lemminger is making his Bellator debut this week and enters the promotion on a three fight win streak. He also last fought 10 months ago, but won that contest via unanimous decision. Lemminger is the former CFFC and FFC welterweight champion.
Seven of his 10 pro wins have come via stoppage with four by way of TKO/KO. He will be the bigger fighter in this bout as he has at least three inches in height and reach advantages.
I think this fight will come down to grappling and Lemminger appears to have the advantage in this area as well. Two of Smith’s three losses have come via submission and I believe he will suffer his third one this week.
Jake Smith vs Mark Lemminger –Lemminger (NA)
Bellator 242 Main Card Betting Preview
Aaron Pico vs Solo Hatley Jr.
Aaron Pico (-700)
Solo Hatley Jr. (+500)
Hatley is the biggest underdog for the entire card as he makes his second trip inside the Bellator cage. His first fight was in February and the featherweight prospect defeated Gaston Bolanos via split decision. Despite having odds of +390 to +530, Hatley is very confident heading into this bout:
“He’s a real great wrestler, he has ok boxing (but) he’s kind of got that Cody Garbrandt chin. I see him striking with me for a little bit. Soon as he gets hit, he’ll start going for takedowns. I do see me finishing him either at the end of the first round or beginning the second round.”
Jay Jay Wilson is the undefeated prospect looking to take a big step up in competition this week. He’s currently 4-0 in Bellator and last fought in January where he defeated Mario Navarro via 2nd round submission. All five of Wilson’s wins have come via stoppage with four by way of submission.
“I just think ‘okay, there’s a guy in front of me and he’s going to try to kill me, so I have to try to kill him first. He’s a tough opponent. He’s super-explosive, a really good wrestler. He’s going to be a tricky out. I want to wear him out. I want to take him down and take away that ability and then once I do that, the second half is where I’m going to start to shine.”
Claxton is a hard hitting striker who’s only competed in Bellator for his career. Four of his six pro wins have come via TKO/KO. However, his lone career loss came via 2nd round submission against Emmanuel Sanchez 10 months ago.
For Claxton to win this fight, he will need to keep it standing. He has the striking advantage to not only outpoint Wilson, but to also finish him off.
It’s clear that Wilson’s best chance at winning this fight is getting it to the mat where his jiu-jitsu skills are too much for Claxton to handle.
The odds heavily favor Claxton in this one as he’s listed at a range of -230 to -260. Yet, for the entire main card, I think Wilson has the best chance to pull off the upset even more than Ricky Bandejas in the main event.
I’m taking the upset wager and going with Wilson to pick up the victory.
Tywan Claxton vs Jay Jay Wilson –Wilson (+200)
Jason Jackson vs Jordan Mein
Jason Jackson (-175)
Jordan Mein (+155)
Jordan Mein is the underdog in this fight as he competes for the first time in two years. Mein last fought on July 28th 2018, in the UFC where he beat Alex Morono via unanimous decision. He’s on a two fight win streak and went 5-4 inside the octagon.
Mein’s fight on Friday marks the second time competing in a Scott Coker led MMA promotion as he also fought in Strikeforce from 2011 to 2012.
Mein missed two years due to injuries. He had multiple surgeries on a torn meniscus. Mein says that he’s 100% healthy and that he feels awesome. For those that don’t remember his fight game, Mein has a good blend of striking and ground awareness to be a tough fight for anyone.
23 of Mein’s 31 pro wins have come via stoppage with 16 by way of TKO/KO. 13 of his 43 pro fights have gone the distance. He has an 8-5 record in those bouts.
Jason Jackson has gone 4-1 in his last five fights and is 2-1 with Bellator. He’s a former champ with LFA, Titan FC, and Victory FC in the 170 pound weight class. Seven of his 11 pro wins have come via stoppage. Six of his 15 pro fights have gone the distance. He’s 4-2 in those bouts.
Two years off is a long hiatus from the fight game. It’s hard for me to put confidence in Mein since we have no idea how his conditioning is and if he’s evolved as a fighter.
The smart wager for this fight is on Jackson. However, Mein is worthy of a small flier for the betting daredevils out there. I’m going with Jackson to either win via TKO/KO or by squeaking out a decision victory.
Jason Jackson vs Jordan Mein –Jackson (-175)
Ricky Bandejas vs Sergio Pettis
Ricky Bandejas (+125)
Sergio Pettis (-145)
Ricky Bandejas comes in as the underdog with odds listed between +115 and +130. He also comes into this bout having won two straight fights. Bandejas has a 3-2 record in Bellator with wins over Gallagher, Kayretli and Mlambo. He has losses to Archuleta and Mix, which both defeats came last year.
Bandejas last fought in February and beat Frans Mlambo via 2nd round KO. It was the 6th KO/TKO win of his career. He also has three submission victories. Bandejas is 4-1 in fights that have gone the distance. Both of his career losses have come via submission.
His [Pettis] standup is really well and I fought a guy who had over 200 kickboxing fights and he had a standup that is really well. He is a good submission guy, Gallagher was a good submission guy, so I’ve definitely faced guys like him before. It’s a big test, he fought some of the best guys in the world, former champs, No. 1 contenders, so I’m excited. I think overall I’m a better fighter.”
Sergio Pettis will make his second fight for Bellator this week after pummeling his first opponent six months ago. Pettis defeated Khaskhakyan via 1st round submission. It was a solid performance that made fans happy, but Bandjejas will be a step up in competition.
"He's gonna have to make a lot of adjustments – I'm years ahead of this man." –@SergioPettis
For Pettis, 15 of his 24 pro fights have gone the distance. He’s 12-3 in those contests. Pettis has a solid standup game, but it’s his jiu-jitsu skills that are very dangerous. In fact, he clearly has the mat advantage over Bandejas.
Bandejas compared Pettis to his fight against Gallagher, where Bandejas pulled off a solid upset win over the highly touted Gallagher. Unfortunately, Bandejas isn’t quite accurate with this comparison as Pettis is noticeably a step up in level of talent from Gallagher.
Pettis has fought some of the best in his weight class including guys like Cejudo, Benavidez and Formiga. He’s just 26 years old and still entering his prime.
Pettis has the chin to handle anything Bandejas throws at him. If Sergio can’t force Bandejas to tap out then I think he will still get the victory, but it will take three full rounds to do so.
Ricky Bandejas vs Sergio Pettis –Pettis (-145)
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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