Soto (left) will defend his featherweight title against Warren (Photo courtesy of Bellator).
Bellator Featherweight Champ Joe Soto Battles Joe Warren in Main Event
San Antonio, Texas (Thursday, September 2, 2010) – Bellator Fighting Championships will head into the Majestic Theatre in San Antonio tonight, featuring a loaded card that is highlighted by a Bellator featherweight championship fight. Champion Joe “The Hammer” Soto (9-0) will put his title on the line when he steps into the Bellator cage with challenger Joe Warren (5-1), who won the Bellator Season 2 Featherweight Tournament.
“I think my overall game will give him problems,” Soto said of Warren. “I’m an MMA veteran, and he should be worried about my game. Warren likes to do a lot of talking, and is doing a nice job of selling the fight, but he definitely has some holes I feel like I can exploit. As always, I’m prepared for any situation.”
Soto, who is a Greco-Roman specialist, attended Iowa Central Community College and wrestled there with dominating UFC powerhouses Jon “Bones” Jones and Cain Velasquez. The California native is undefeated in nine professional bouts, and he also took part in Bellator 1 where he defeated Ben Greer via a first round TKO.
“I don’t think it’s going to be the pace that determines this, I think it’s going to be all the positions that we get into,” Soto continued. “Warren’s going to get into a lot of unfamiliar places that he’s not going to be comfortable with.”
Warren, however, does feel that pace will play a dominating role in this match.
“No one can handle my pace. I can’t even handle it,” he stated. “I’m going to push even harder than I ever have before. I don’t plan on leaving without that belt.”
Warren fought his first three professional bouts in Dream before making his Bellator debut at Bellator 13 in Hollywood, Florida. At that card, he defeated Eric Marriot via unanimous decision in the first round of the featherweight tournament. Warren earned his title shot against Soto after taking the judges’ decision over Georgi Karakhanyan in the semifinals at Bellator 18 and then Patricio Freire in the tournament final at Bellator 23.
“I’m so happy this fight is here,” Warren remarked. “This fight been a real long time coming, and I just don’t want to let this opportunity pass me by. Every fight I had in Season 2 was the biggest of my career, and now the chance to win the belt is here. This is what I do for a living, so it’s time to get busy.”
Three more fights are scheduled to hit the airways tonight when Bellator 27 is shown live on Fox Sports Net, each being an eliminator in the Bellator Bantamweight Tournament. Bryan Goldsby (15-7) and Ed West (13-4) will do work in the cage, with Nick Mamalis (10-4) facing Zach Makovsky (9-2) and Travis Reddinger (14-2) battling Uylsses Gomez (6-1).