Carl brings an impressive 14-2 record to the competition (Photo courtesy of Bellator).
Iraq War Veteran Becomes Seventh Competitor in Welterweight Tournament
Only one spot remains for the upcoming Bellator Season 4 Welterweight Tournament, with the promotion announcing the addition of former U.S. Army Sergeant and Iraq war veteran Steve Carl (14-2). The Iowa native now becomes the seventh participant in the eight-man competition, solidifying his spot in the tournament after a first round submission of Tyler Stinson last August at Bellator 26.
“Steve Carl has been on an incredible journey, and I’m very happy to see him compete in this stacked tournament,” Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney remarked. “Steve has been a tremendous competitor throughout his fights in Bellator, and I expect him to take his game to the next level in this tournament.”
Carl was the victor in nine of his last 10 matches, and the only loss resulted from a submission to fellow Season 4 Tournament contestant Dan Hornbuckle at Bellator 19. That bout was in the show’s last welterweight competition, in which Hornbuckle went on to reach the finals before falling to current Bellator Welterweight Champion Ben Askren.
“I don't feel like I've ever been able to show my true potential out there in any of my fights, but I think fans can expect to see a more explosive and fired-up Steve Carl than ever before in 2011,” Carl stated. “What was good enough last year isn't going to cut it this year.”
Becoming a professional Mixed Martial Artist in 2005, Carl has made appearances in a variety of promotions since his initial debut in the Xtreme Fight Championship. He began his career with five consecutive wins before suffering his first loss, and the crafty representative of Team Hard Drive has emerged victorious in every possible way over his 14 victories. He currently has two TKOs, nine submissions and three decision wins on his resume, and he now looks to apply his versatile game to a stacked Bellator Welterweight Tournament.
“I think the level of talent in this upcoming welterweight tournament is phenomenal,” Carl said. “It's really off the charts this year. I'm planning on fighting from the top to the bottom this year. I think that the further I make it in the tournament, the easier my opponents are going to get. I'm expecting to fight one of the best guys right off the bat, so that's what I'm getting ready for.”
With the addition of Carl, the upcoming welterweight tournament is now just about set. Already joining him in the competition is former title-holder Lyman Good, Hornbuckle, Rick Hawn, Brent Weedman, Chris Lozano and Jim Wallhead. The tournament will kick off in March, as Bellator begins the first of a three-year partnership with MTV2.