Brandon Girtz (15-7) vs. Michael Chandler (17-4)
Luke Irwin: Yes, I wanted Chandler to earn his title back after an injury forced him to relenquish it during his defense to Brent Primus, but Girtz will be a game opponent at the very least. Still, Chandler is way too good. Chandler via R3 TKO.
Nolan Howell: While Girtz certainly has the power to catch Chandler sleeping and put him back to sleep, Chandler has the decided advantage of determining where this fight gets to take place overall with his wrestling background if he should ever get in danger on the feet, though he might not need that as he has demonstrated some good stand-up during his run as champion. Whether it be by ground and pound or on the feet, expect a early night for Chandler as he looks to be primed for current lightweight champion Brett Primus in a rematch. Michael Chandler by first-round TKO.
Featherweight Bout: AJ McKee (10-0) vs. Justin Lawrence (11-4)
Luke: McKee with a nice step-up in Lawrence, but AJ still has the tools to take the W, here. McKee via UD.
Nolan: Lawrence is a great test for McKee with his unorthodox, linear striking style that comes from a traditional martial arts background. It will be a bit of a problem for McKee, who has a bit of an unorthodox game on the feet himself, as he seems to get tunnel vision on the feet and can be prone to sitting back with kicks to keep himself out of range. Still, the McKee family knows how to win fights and expect McKee to paw from the outside and use his wrestling if he gets threatened, even if Lawrence manages to find a way in and out on the striking. AJ McKee by unanimous decision.
160lb Catchweight Bout: Devon Brock (1-0) vs. Kevin Ferguson Jr. (2-1)
Luke: Brock looks like a guy specifically chosen for Slice Jr. Ferguson via R2 Submission.
Nolan: Ultimately, it’s hard to expect that Bellator will put “Baby Slice” in the corner here with matchmaking that should trouble him too much and Ferguson has shown to have some promise at being at the very least a serviceable attraction fighter when he makes his way up the card. Kevin Ferguson Jr. by second-round TKO.
Welterweight Bout: Joaquin Buckley (8-1) vs. Logan Storley (7-0)
Luke: Two guys that have made their living on knockouts, but once they came to Bellator, it was shored up. I expect both guys to throw, but it goes the distance because neither wants to be KO’d. Storley via SD.
Nolan: Storely is the higher ceiling fighter of the two and should have trouble here. Logan Storely by unanimous decision.