Both fighters are looking to prove they are still top welterweights in this fight (Photo courtesy of Bellator).
Welterweight Pairing Added to Atlantic City Show
The debut of Bellator Fighting Championships in the State of New Jersey continues to gain momentum, as the promotion announced a huge welterweight pairing for Bellator 44 at Caesars in Atlantic City. Added to a card that already features Bellator Middleweight Champion Hector Lombard taking on UFC veteran Falaniko Vitale in the main event is now a showdown between former title-holder Lyman Good (11-2) and Season 2 Tournament Finalist Dan Hornbuckle (22-4).
“Good vs. Hornbuckle is a fight a lot of MMA fans, myself included, have wanted to see for quite some time,” Bellator Chairman and CEO Bjorn Rebney stated. “These two guys have Bellator in their blood, and on May 14th, one will move into our next tournament and one will go home. This promises to be a great fight on May 14th at Caesars.”
Good won his first 10 matches as a professional mixed martial artist but has suffered two defeats in his last three outings. His 10th overall victory came in the finals of the first Bellator Welterweight Tournament against Omar De La Cruz, crowning him as the inaugural champion of the weight class for the promotion. His next time into the Bellator cage was at Bellator 33 last October in Philadelphia, where he battled former U.S. Olympic wrestler Ben Askren for 25 minutes before the former Missouri standout captured a unanimous decision win. Good then entered the current welterweight tournament, defeating Chris Lozano in his quarterfinal match-up and dropping a split decision to another former U.S. Olympian, Judo player Rick Hawn, in the semifinals.
“A lot of people didn’t know I had about a two-week layoff before my fight with Rick because I got sick,” said Good, who also gave high praise to the undefeated Hawn. “90 percent of a fight is always mental, and when I got in the cage, it never really felt like it was my fight.”
On the other side of Good on May 14th will be Hornbuckle, who most recently suffered a welterweight tournament loss at Bellator 35 to Brent Weedman, a man he submitted in 2006 at Legends of Fighting 12. Hornbuckle has just four losses in 26 professional matches, but he has also dropped two of his last three pairings with one of those blemishes coming from the hands of Askren.
“There’s no excuse for my loss to Brent Weedman,” Hornbuckle remarked. “It's my fault for not pulling the trigger. I can only be mad at myself for not taking the opportunity to finish the fight. No more of that. This fight with Lyman, the proof will be in the pudding. Mark my words. Just watch, as soon as that bell rings, I'm going to be sprinting dead at him, and I'm going to put my knee dead in his face.”
Much like Rebney and early fans of Bellator, Hornbuckle admits he also has had his sights set on Good for quite some time.
“My original goal when I first signed with Bellator was to fight Lyman Good,” he continued. “Lyman Good has never left my radar. Stylistically, physically and mentally, we both share the same attributes that's going to make this a ‘Fight of the Year’ nomination.”
This fight will serve as a qualifier for the upcoming Bellator Season 5 Welterweight Tournament, which will kick off later this year after the conclusion of the current season.
Bellator 44 Announcement