Press Release – Newport Beach, CA. (March 15, 2013) – The Toughest Tournament in Sports will end its season in style as Bellator MMA makes return to Atlantic City from Revel on April 4th live on Spike. The night will feature reigning Bellator Featherweight Champion Pat Curran putting his title on the line against Season 7 Tournament winner and explosive Russian striker Shahbulat Shamhalaev, while the Middleweight and Featherweight Tournaments will be decided, as Doug Marshall battles Brett Cooper for the $100,000 Middleweight Tournament Championship, while Mike “The Marine” Richman will square off with Frodo Khasbulaev, with the winner earning their guaranteed title shot. The night will also feature the return of fan favorite and former Judo Olympian Rick Hawn, who meets fellow Judo blackbelt and former WEC Champion Karo Parisyan in a welterweight affair.
Tickets are on sale now and can be purchased at all Ticketmaster locations, online at Ticketmaster.com and by calling 800-745-3000. The Main Card will broadcast LIVE starting at 10 p.m. EST on Spike, as well as in Spanish language on mun2. The preliminary card will be streamed LIVE and FREE on Spike.com, with doors to event opening at 6:30pm EST.
Widely regarded as one of the top two featherweights in the world, Curran brings a dominating 18-4 record into his latest title defense, including victories over Patricio Pitbull, Marlon Sandro, Roger Huerta, and Mike Ricci. While the reigning Bellator Champ had his original sights set on Straus, Curran is well aware of the challenges at hand April 4th with Shamhalaev.
“He’s a great counter striker, as am I, and I see a lot of openings with Shabulat,” Curran said. “Shabulat brings one punch knockout power, and with my style, it’s going to be a swing for fences fight. This is my second fight this season, and I couldn’t ask for more. I love staying active, and Bellator has provided that for me.”
Widely considered one of the best lightweights in the world, Rick “Genghis” Hawn returns to his more natural 170 lbs. to battle Karo Parisyan in a highly anticipated affair.
“I’m really excited to be back fighting so soon,” Hawn said. “I have a tough opponent in Karo, but I’m looking forward to the challenge. With two of the world’s best judoka fighters fighting each other, it should be an exciting fight.”
The preliminary card will be highlighted with a middleweight showdown between New Jersey star Tom DeBlass and New York native Carlos Brooks as the two look to collect their first Bellator victory. After announcing his retirement in 2012, DeBlass has returned to the cage and will make his highly anticipated return April 4th inside Revel.
“I’m very excited to be fighting for Bellator right in my backyard,” DeBlass said. “All of my friends, family, students, and many fans will get to see me live. I’m coming back and making a statement, you can count on that.”
The full card for Bellator MMA from Revel on April 4th is below:
Bellator Featherweight World Title Fight: Pat Curran vs. Shahbulat Shamhalaev
Bellator Middleweight Tournament Finals: Brett Cooper vs. Doug Marshall
Bellator Featherweight Tournament Finals: Mike Richman vs. Frodo Khasbulaev
Welterweight Feature Fight: Rick Hawn vs. Karo Parisyan
Welterweight Feature Fight: Lyman Good vs. Dante Rivera
Women’s Feature Fight: Munah Holland vs. Jessica Eye
Catchweight Feature Fight(140 lbs.): Jimmie Rivera vs. Brian Kelleher
Welterweight Feature Fight: Sam Oropeza vs. Shedrick Goodridge
Middleweight Feature Fight: Tom DeBlass vs. Carlos Brooks
Light Heavyweight Feature Fight: Liam McGeary vs. Anton Talamantes
Featherweight Feature Fight: Brylan Van Artsdalen vs. Brett Martinez
For more information, visit Bellator.com, follow Bellator on Twitter @BellatorMMA, follow Bellator Chairman & CEO Bjorn Rebney @BjornRebney and check out Bellator on Facebook at www.facebook.com/BellatorMMA
About Bellator MMA
Bellator MMA is the world’s largest tournament based Mixed Martial Arts organization. Televised to nearly 500 Million homes worldwide in over 107 countries, Bellator’s majority owner is entertainment giant Viacom. In the United States, Bellator can be seen on Spike TV, the MMA television leader. With over 150 world-class athletes under contract, Bellator is home to many of the sport’s top mixed martial artists. Bellator’s founder & CEO, Bjorn Rebney, is an experienced fighting sports and entertainment executive with a deep commitment to the purity and integrity of the sport of MMA and its athletes. Bellator’s core philosophy is that title shots should be earned, not given. This belief gave rise to Bellator’s real sport, tournament-based format, which gives Bellator’s tournaments a true playoff feel that keeps the sport true and distances itself from the subjective side of fighting sports found in organizations that utilize a matchmaking/casting formula. Bellator MMA is comprised of an executive team that includes top industry professionals in television production, live event orchestration, fighter development/relations, venue procurement, sponsorship creation/development, international licensing, marketing, advertising, publicity and commission relations. Bellator is based in Newport Beach, California.
About Spike TV:
Spike TV is available in 98.7 million homes and is a division of Viacom Media Networks. A unit of Viacom (NASDAQ: VIA, VIAB), Viacom Media Networks is one of the world’s leading creators of programming and content across all media platforms. Spike TV’s Internet address is www.spike.com and for up-to-the-minute and archival press information and photographs, visit Spike TV’s press site at http://www.spike.com/press. Follow us on Twitter @spiketvpr for the latest in breaking news updates, behind-the-scenes information and photos.
mun2 is the leading Hispanic cable network for young millennial adults 18-34. From reality to music, on-air to digital, mun2 creates original content that resonates across a multi-screen platform. Young, vibrant and unabashedly Latino, mun2 has a distribution to over 38 million households. The network is part of Telemundo Media, a division of NBCUniversal.