MMA: Bellator 43 to Feature Welterweight Tournament Final

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Rick Hawn and Jay Hieron have both made their way to the Bellator Season 4 Welterweight final.  Now the undefeated Hawn meets the 21-4 Jay Hieron for the tournament championship and a chance to fight Welterweight Champion, Ben Askren.

Bellator has been airing weekly live shows on MTV2, and those events feature tournament fights at Lightweight, Welterweight and Light Heavyweight.  It’s a very aggressive schedule having live events weekly, and Bellator has done a great job keeping the events exciting and engrossing.  The Welterweight tournament has been going well, and now we’ve reached the finals.


Rick Hawn was a little known albeit talented fighter before this tournament started.  He earned his way into the fray with a victory over LeVon Maynard last October.  He beat Jim Wallhead via unanimous decision in the first round, then battled to a split decision victory over former Bellator champion, Lyman Good in a back and forth battle.  Rick has moved his record up to a perfect 11-0 and will be looking to win the biggest fight of his career when he clashes with Hieron on May 7th.

Jay Hieron was the biggest name in the tournament.  Jay’s fought for Affliction, Bellator, IFL, WEC, Strikeforce and the UFC.  He’s been in all the big shows and currently has a nine fight winning streak.  It’s hard to imagine why he’s not currently in the UFC, but a win in the Bellator tourney final, followed by a win over Ben Askren you’d think he’d be able to fight anywhere he wants.  In the first round he defeated Anthony Lapsley by submission in the first.  His second fight wasn’t as easy, as he took a questionable decision from Brent Weedman after three hard fought rounds.  He now will stand across from Hawn, who you’d expect would be a marked underdog against Hieron.

When you look at what each fighter brings to the table, you’d think Hawn would want to keep the fight standing, while Hieron would likely wish to smother the Muay Thai and Judo player on the mat.  Hieron is a fighter who is well rounded but might not have the requisite standup to go toe to toe with Hawn but he certainly does have the ability to put Hawn on his backside and smother him with ground and pound and submission attempts.

Bellator 43 airs live on MTV2 on Saturday May 7th, 2011.  The event takes place from the First Council Casino in Newkirk, OK.  As of this article, there are no additional bouts announced for this event.  As additional bouts are announced, we’ll have them at MMA Valor.


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