MMA Analysis: Complete Bellator 50 Preview

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Following the welterweights kicking the Bellator season five off last week, it’s the middleweights turn to shine at Bellator 50.

Eight men enter the Bellator cage for the quarterfinal round of the promotions third middleweight tournament. The tournament field includes three of the four fighters who participated in the past season tournament finals.

The Bellator 50 main card will have an early start time of 4pm PT / 7pm ET on MTV2, with the undercard streaming earlier on

185 lbs. Quarterfinal bout: Jared Hess vs. Bryan Baker

Season one running up, Jared Hess (12-2-1) returned to action at Bellator 42 after an 11 month layoff due to a knee injury. His only two career losses have come against the two winners of the Bellator middleweight tournaments, Hector Lombard and Alexander Shlemenko. Bryan Baker (15-2) is the season two runner-up and last defeated Joe Riggs at Bellator 43. They each hold a loss against Shlemenko and the winner of this bout will be the front-runner for a post in the finals.

185 lbs. Quarterfinal bout: Zelg Galesic vs. Alexander Shlemenko

Zelg Galesic (10-5) gets a tough draw in his Bellator debut as the Croatian will face the season two middleweight tournament winner, Alexander Shlemenko (40-7). Galesic enters the Bellator tournament 1-2 in his last three fights, but has only fought once since the end of 2009. Shlemenko looks to get one step closer to the final and another shot at Hector Lombard. The Russian took the champ the full five rounds at Bellator 34 and has since won three in a row.

185 lbs. Quarterfinal bout: Sam Alvey vs. Vitor Vianna

Sam Alvey (15-2) earned his place in the tournament with a split decision win over Karl Amoussou at Bellator 45. His opponent, Vitor Vianna (10-1-1) will be making his Bellator debut and brings in a three fight winning streak against Alvey.

185 lbs. Quarterfinal bout: Victor O’Donnell vs. Brian Rogers

Victor O’Donnell (10-2) was a brief fighter on the eleventh season of The Ultimate Fighter, losing in the entry round to Chris Camozzi by unanimous decision. Brian Rogers (7-2) has won six in a row since starting his professional career off 1-2. He last fought on the Strikeforce: Feijao vs. Henderson undercard, defeating Ian Rammel by 1st round TKO. Both fighters will be making their Bellator debut in what should be the classic “Striker vs. Grappler” matchup.

Local Feature Fights (

155 lbs.: Radley Martinez vs. Brian van Hoven

170 lbs.: Ailton Barbosa vs. Ryan Keenan

185 lbs.: Brett Cooper vs. Valdir Araujo

170 lbs.: Cristiano Souza vs. John Kelly

140 lbs.: Shah Bobonis vs. Marcos da Matta

155 lbs.: Dietter Navarro vs. Marcelo Goncalves

155 lbs.: J.P. Reese vs. Martin Brown

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