Bloody Good Bellator 77 Preview: The Lightweight Tournament Begins

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bill-swift - October 20, 2012

This Saturday, the Reading Eagle Theater in the Sovereign Center in Reading, Penn is playing host to a battle of ready-for-prime-time contenders for the Bellator Lightweight Title.

The 8-man tournament-style format that has made Bellator a dark horse in the UFC-dominated world of MMA, offers the winner a spring board to bigger and better things.  Oh, and a cool $100,000 plus a guaranteed shot at the title.

The Bellator 77 main card airs on Spike this Friday at 6/5c and features some intriguing match-ups.

Check out everything you need to know about Bellator 77

Rich Clementi vs. Alexander "Tiger" Sarnavskiy

Two lightweights with everything to prove and nothing to lose, Clementi and Sarnavskly looks like an interesting match-up on paper.   Clementi, who once graced the Octagon of the UFC is on a hot streak, winning 3 of 4 of his last fights, while Sarnavsky fights for the first time in the Bellator ring and sports a perfect 20-0 career record.  If Sarnavsky gets the upper hand, don't expect this one to last long, his fights have moved past the first round only twice in the last 10.

Rene Nazare vs. Ricardo Tirloni

Nazare needs to turn things around here. After a blazing start that included three consecutive quality wins in Bellator, the lightweight has fallen to a decision twice in a row (to Jacob Kirwan and Thiago Michael).  Tirloni looked like a wrecking machine after 11 wins in a row before falling to a nasty looking keylock at the hands of the surprising Rick Hawn at Bellator 62.

Marcin Held vs. Murad Machaev

Held has been impressive out of Poland – with his most notable victory coming in a split-decision win over runner-up from The Ultimate Fighter 8, Phillipe Nover.  Russian Machaev looks to issue another beat down, but for the first time under the Bellator banner.  He's a rough and tumble character – stopping seven of his last nine opponents.

Dave Jansen vs. Magomed Saadulaev

We're intrigued by this match up.   Jansen is undefeated (3-0) since leaving WEC and M-1 for the greener pastures of Bellator.   But Saadulaev is an x-factor, practically unknown coming out of his native Russia.  He's harder than a coffin nail, and represents a serious challenge to the better-known Jansen.   Watch for fireworks here.

You can watch Bellator 77, only on Spike, this Friday night at 6/5c.

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