Monster Energy’s American Phil ‘Mr. Wonderful’ Davis dethroned British Liam McGeary at Bellator 163 to take the Bellator light heavyweight strap, handing McGeary the first defeat of his professional career.
The banner event occurred at Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Conn., and aired on Spike.
Davis, a former collegiate national champion from Penn State, dominated heralded striker and jui jitsu ace McGeary and kept him largely defensive with his back on the mat through all five rounds. In the standup, where McGeary believed he had the upper hand, Davis surprised with a hard chopping left hook in round one, and thudding leg kicks throughout the entire fight.
While Davis’ ground and pound may not have been wholly destructive, it was clinical and controlled as he transitioned to full-mount at will, landing quick strikes and elbows and working for his trademark Kimura. McGeary displayed remarkable defense from his back, avoiding serious damage, but offered no real jui jitsu offense, rarely threatening for a choke or submission during the fight.
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Davis showcased his elite wrestling control, evasive footwork, and dynamic kicks for all five rounds. When it was all over, Davis earned an easy unanimous decision with scores of 50-43, 50-45 and 50-44, and scored takedowns in every round.
“I've worked so hard to be a world champion, but all of my hard work is to no avail without great sponsors like Monster Energy and Muscle Monster helping me stay focused on training hard each day and placing me on Monster Energy’s Elite team of extreme sports winners,” said Davis.
Davis’ win takes his run of form to four fights, four wins under the Bellator banner following his high-profile switch from the UFC.
“Phil Davis has once again proven he is one of the best mixed martial artists in the world at any weight class by beating the previously undefeated Liam McGeary,” said Scott Coker, CEO Bellator. “His incredible skills inside the cage are matched if not surpassed by his shining personality outside of it. I'm proud to have Phil representing the Bellator brand and look forward to his first title defense.”
Davis, the new Bellator MMA 205lb champion has now extended his impressive fight record in MMA to 17 pro wins in 20 fights. He is one of Monster Energy’s elite MMA athletes along with Conor “The Notorious” McGregor, “Rowdy” Ronda Rousey, Tyron “The Chosen One” Woodley, Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone, Chris “All-American” Weidman, Anthony “Showtime” Pettis, Cain Velasquez, Daniel Cormier, Rampage Jackson, and Michael Chandler.
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