It didn’t take long for Bellator middleweight champion Gegard Mousasi to impose his will and finish top contender Austin Vanderford at Bellator 275.
The fight began with a flurry of wild exchanges between the two middleweights on the feet. Mousasi was able to showcase solid boxing movements to elude Vanderford’s strikes.
Mousasi was able to land a big right hand in the middle of a Vanderford takedown attempt to drop Vanderford to the mat. After quickly moving into top position off a sprawl, Mousasi landed a series of heavy elbows and right hands to finish the fight via TKO.
This was Mousasi’s second straight successful title defense since earning the middleweight title over Douglas Lima in 2020. He has since earned dominant wins over John Salter and now Vanderford since earning the middleweight throne.
A loss to Rafael Lovato Jr. at Bellator 223 ended up being a turning point in Mousasi’s career. He would lose the belt before going on his current four-fight winning streak and cementing himself as the best middleweight in Bellator.
Before signing with Bellator in 2017, Mousasi enjoyed a dominant run in the UFC that put him on the cusp of a middleweight title shot. But, a win over former UFC champion Chris Weidman at UFC 210 wouldn’t be enough to earn him the next shot.
As for Vanderford, his loss to Mousasi was the first of his professional career. He most recently earned one-sided wins over the likes of Fabian Edwards and Vinicius de Jesus en route to the title shot.
Mousasi continues to prove that he’s arguably one of the most underrated fighters in the world and it could take a big test to take away his Bellator middleweight title.
Check out the highlights from Mousasi’s win over Vanderford at Bellator 275.