LOS ANGELES – A plethora of fantastic fighters armed with world-title aspirations have joined the stacked BELLATOR MMA 276: Borics vs. Burnell card on Saturday, March 12. SHOWTIME will televise the mammoth main card live from inside the Family Arena in St. Charles, Mo., at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT.
Former title challenger and No. 2 ranked-John Salter (18-5), as well as undefeated BELLATOR MMA No. 3-ranked Johnny Eblen (10-0), and women’s No. 2 featherweight Cat Zingano (12-4) hope to take the next step toward BELLATOR MMA gold as they join the four co-headline brawlers currently ranked among the upper echelon of their respective divisions.
Featured among the magnificent MMA melees will be three of the top-ten middleweights, five undefeated and one unblemished amateur, four top-two contenders, and ten fighters ranked along with BELLATOR MMA’s elite.
In the main event of the evening, Adam Borics (17-1) and Mads Burnell (16-3), two featherweights currently tied at No. 2 in the official BELLATOR MMA rankings, will square off for a future shot at the BELLATOR 145-pound world title. In the co-featured bout, former BELLATOR Light Heavyweight Champion, 13-time BELLATOR veteran, and No. 2-ranked Phil Davis (23-6, 1 NC) will open his 2022 campaign against No. 4 Julius Anglickas (10-2), who most recently challenged for the 205-pound title. Additionally, the main card will spotlight an international lightweight extravaganza as undefeated New Alliance Jiu-Jitsu team member Jay-Jay Wilson (8-0) of Auckland, New Zealand, moves up in weight to meet Dagestan, Russia’s Gadzhi Rabadanov (16-4-2), who is coming off a first-round knockout in his promotional debut at BELLATOR MMA 263 in July 2021.
Prior to the consequential co-featured contests, a pair of top middleweights will round out the main card as Salter and Eblen square off for a shot at the winner of the upcoming world title bout pitting 185-pound Champion Gegard Mousasiagainst No. 1-ranked Austin Vanderford at BELLATOR MMA 275 later this month in Dublin, Ireland.
Armed with an 8-2 BELLATOR record, Salter, a 15-year pro MMA veteran out of Nashville, Tenn., holds the promotional record for most submissions in BELLATOR MMA middleweight history, and has stopped 17 of his 23 opponents. Nicknamed “Diamond Hands” due to his love for crypto currency and willingness to hold onto his investments, Eblen is coming off a 71-second annihilation of Collin Huckbody at BELLATOR MMA 272 in December 2021. The six-time BELLATOR MMA veteran and American Top-Team product, who recently signed a six-fight BELLATOR contract extension, has secured six opening-round stoppages, including two of his three 2021 opponents.
In addition to the magnificent main card, a veritable cornucopia of pulsating preliminary punch ups will commence the preeminent night of action, including a Minnesota midwestern melee pitting former UFC title challenger and Winona, Minn., native Zingano against No.7-ranked lightweight Pam Sorenson (9-4) of Blaine, Minn.
Set to make her third straight BELLATOR MMA appearance with aspirations of challenging BELLATOR MMA Women’s Welterweight World Champion Cris Cyborg, Zingano has had a decorated fighting career. The former NCAA Division III All-American wrestler became the first mother to compete in the UFC and initial woman to capture the company’s “Fight of the Night” award, counting victories over Miesha Tate, Amanda Nunes, Marion Reneau, and Gabrielle Holloway. Recently, “Alpha” was featured in the series “Double Duty” that chronicled the attempts to maintain a balance between the daily responsibilities of parenthood and earning a living as a pro athlete.
A former Invicta FC women’s featherweight champion, Sorenson started kickboxing after the passing of her best friend. After vacating her crown and requesting a release from Invicta in July 2021, the Minneapolis mauler signed a multi-fight deal with BELLATOR MMA in mid-2021. Soon after joining the pioneering company, the 35-year-old recorded a hard-fought split decision over Roberta Samad at BELLATOR MMA 264 in Uncasville, Conn.
Also featured will be a bruising brawl pitting two hard-hitting heavyweights with seven career stoppages apiece as No. 8-ranked Alex “Eazy” Polizzi (9-1) of Madison, Wisc., clashes with Team Pitbull’s Jose “Guru” Augusto (7-3, 1 NC). Additionally, San Diego, Calif. native, 11-time BELLATOR MMA veteran, and No. 6-ranked “Barbaric” Derek Anderson (17-4, 1 NC) will mix it up with submission specialist, BELLATOR Brazilian bruiser, and Japanese-born Goiti Yamaguchi (26-5), in a worldwide welterweight war.
Furthermore, added to BELLATOR MMA 276: Borics vs. Burnell is a memorable middleweight match pitting undefeated, No. 6-ranked 185-pounder and owner of three consecutive stoppages Romero Cotton (5-0) of Hutchinson, Kansas, who will bravely battle the horrors of “The Boogeyman” Lance Wright (5-2). Moreover, former Division II All-American wrestler and fantastic featherweight Cody Law (5-0), fresh off his third opening-round finish, strives to avoid being scared off by “Phantom” Johnny Soto (5-2) of Escondido, Calif.
Continuing the unforgettable night of amazing action, undefeated welterweight and American Top-Team member Roman Faraldo (6-0) will make his fourth consecutive promotional appearance when he challenges BELLATOR MMA rookieKelvin Rayford (5-3), while local combatant Jordan Howard (10-5) of Jefferson City hopes to thrill the Missouri faithful against Athens, Illinois’ own Trevor Ward (5-5). Two flyweights will test their skills as well, when Diana Avsaragova (4-0) of Russia welcomes Ashley Deen (5-6) to BELLATOR. Lastly, a Show-Me State lightweight showdown between BELLATOR beginner Dan Busch (4-1) makes his sixth straight Missouri appearance by confronting St. Louis’ Josh Augustine (5-2).
The thrilling preliminary fights will stream live on the BELLATOR MMA YouTube channel, SHOWTIME Sports YouTube channel and Pluto TV beginning at 6 p.m. ET/3 p.m. PT.
BELLATOR MMA 276: Borics vs. Burnell Main Card:
Saturday, March 12 – live on SHOWTIME
9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT
Featherweight Main Event: #2-Adam Borics (17-1) vs. #2-Mads Burnell (16-3)
Light Heavyweight Co-Main Event: #2-Phil Davis (23-6, 1 NC) vs. #4-Julius Anglickas (10-2)
Middleweight Bout: #2-John Salter (18-5) vs. #3-Johnny Eblen (10-0)
Lightweight Bout: Jay-Jay Wilson (8-0) vs. Gadzhi Rabadanov (16-4-2)
BELLATOR MMA YouTube channel | SHOWTIME Sports YouTube channel | Pluto TV
6 p.m. ET/3 p.m. PT
Featherweight Bout: #2-Cat Zingano (12-4) vs. #7-Pam Sorenson (9-4)
Light Heavyweight Bout: #8-Alex Polizzi (9-1) vs. Jose Augusto (7-3, 1 NC)
Welterweight Bout: #6-Derek Anderson (17-4-1) vs. Goiti Yamaguchi (26-5)
Middleweight Bout: #6-Romero Cotton (5-0) vs. Lance Wright (5-2)
Flyweight Bout: Diana Avsaragova (4-0) vs. Ashley Deen (5-6)
Featherweight Bout: Cody Law (5-0) vs. Johnny Soto (4-2)
Welterweight Bout: Roman Faraldo (6-0) vs. Kelvin Rayford (5-3)
Bantamweight Bout: Jordan Howard (10-5) vs. Trevor Ward (5-5)
Lightweight Bout: Dan Busch (4-1) vs. Josh Augustine (5-2)