War Brennan Ward, Justine Kish, plus more join Bellator 274 card on Feb 19 in Uncasville

War Brennan Ward, Justine Kish, plus more join Bellator 274 card on Feb 19 in Uncasville

War

Bellator 274 airs live from Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, CT on Saturday February 19. The headline-bout features No. 4-ranked welterweight contender Neiman Gracie (11-2) up against No. 5-ranked Logan Storley (12-1). A number of undercard bouts have been recently added to the card, including a return of Brennan Ward, and a promotional debut of Justine Kish.

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In the co-featured bout former welterweight champion and No. 8-ranked Andrey Koreshkov (24-4) returns to action against undefeated Mukhamed Berkhamov (14-0). The main card also features 44-fight veteran Georgi Karakhanyan (31-12-1) taking on Northern California’s Adam Piccolotti (12-4) in a battle between two promotional staples. Lastly, opening the main card a pair of returning heavyweights who find themselves tied at No. 8 in the official rankings as three-time promotional veteran and American Top Team standout Said Sowma (8-2) squares off against undefeated Jackson Wink product Davion Franklin (4-0).

War Bellator 274 tickets

Bellator 274 tickets to witness all the action at Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, CT on Saturday, February 19 are on sale. Tickets can be purchased via TicketNetwork.

Other MMA fans can watch Bellator 274: Gracie vs. Storley live on Showtime, starting at 9 pm ET / 6 pm POT. The undercard kicks off at 6 pm ET / 3 pm PT on YouTube and Pluto TV.

In addition to the main card, five newly announced preliminary fights have been added to the undercard. Brennan Ward (14-6) makes his long-awaited return to the cage following a nearly five-year layoff in a 175-pound contract weight bout against feisty Kentuckian Brandon Bell (10-10).

Also on the night longtime UFC standout and Russian native Justine Kish (7-4) makes her Bellator MMA debut against No. 8-ranked DeAnna Bennett (11-7-1) in a flyweight bout featuring two fighters with Los Angeles ties. As well, light heavyweight prospect Christian Edwards (5-1) makes his 2022 debut against the promotional newcomer Kevin Haley (5-5).

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In addition, No. 9-ranked lightweight Aviv Gozali (6-0) of Israel faces Bobby King (10-4) of Utah, while Isaiah Hokit (0-1) moves down to featherweight to faces Theodore Macuka (1-2), who will celebrate his 22nd birthday nine days before the event. Lastly, opening the night of MMA action, Wisconsin native Jordan Newman (3-0) faces Floridian Cody Herbert (2-0) at middleweight.

Five bouts added to Bellator 274 fight card

Following a lengthy MMA hiatus, “Irish” Brennan Ward will make his dramatic return to fight in his home state of Connecticut. By far one of the most entertaining fighters in Bellator history, the former Division III All-American wrestler has finished his opponent in 12 of his 14 victories, including nine in the first round. Although he has taken some time off, the former Bellator Season Nine Middleweight Tournament Winner is eager to remind people what made him a title contender prior to his time away.

Born in Orem, Utah, DeAnna Bennett will make her 2022 debut and third appearance under the Bellator banner. The 37-year-old Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu purple belt enters the Feb. 19 fight fresh off a huge win over former top contender Alejandra Lara at Bellator 266 in San Jose, Calif. Bennett would go on to dedicate the unanimous decision victory to her late father, who served as a San Jose police officer and worked events at the SAP Center where Bennett’s bout was held. Now, the former Invicta FC veteran will look to build off her recent triumph and climb the ranks in Bellator’s stacked 125-pound division.

Following a five-year stint with the rival promotion, seven-time UFC veteran Justine Kish joined forces with Bellator by signing a multi-fight deal in January 2021. After making an appearance on “The Ultimate Fighter 20,” the 33-year-old was awarded a UFC contract. Fighting out of Los Angeles, Kish went 2-1 in her strawweight matchups, including a notable win over Nina Nunes prior to returning to the flyweight class in 2018.

Undefeated Israeli sensation Aviv Gozali (6-0) will make his return to the Bellator cage in search of his seventh straight victory. Since making his professional debut at Bellator 209 back in 2018, “The King” has amassed six first round submissions (all under the Bellator banner), including two in the opening minute of action and a record-setting 11-second Heel Hook victory. Hailing from Bat Yam, Israel, the 21-year-old lightweight is on the cusp of superstardom as he continues his ascension to the top of the Bellator rankings.

Fighting out of Layton, Utah, Bobby King is locked in for the biggest fight of his career as he prepares for his first top-10 opponent. With victories in four of his past five and eight of his last 10 contests, the 38-year-old BANG Muay Thai product and Hawaiian submission specialist is on the brink of joining the lightweight division’s elite. A true thrill-seeker, King also spends time outside of the cage as a professional Fire-Knife Dancer, a traditional Samoan cultural dance that is typically performed in ceremonial processions.

A former standout wrestler at Fresno State, Isaiah Hokit signed with Bellator in November 2020 and hails from a talented athletic family. His brother Josh Hokit is a practice squad player for the San Francisco 49ers and was called up to the pro squad during the 2020-21 NFL season. Following a tough loss in his Bellator debut, the “Central Valley Gangster” hopes to even out his pro record on Feb. 19.

Also hoping to up his record to an even .500 at Bellator 274, Theodore Macuka has survived a number of challenges, including an automobile’s stick shift becoming lodged in his abdomen during a car accident at a young age. After growing up and targeted as an Albanian-American in a foreign country, “The Headtaker” turned pro in July 2019 and stopped his counterpart Rikardo Hysenaj on punches at 0:36 of the opening round.

Returning to the Bellator cage for the fourth time in as many bouts, Jordan Newman has commenced his professional career with two stoppages among three triumphs. Following a hard-fought victory in his last bout over Branko Busick at Bellator 255 in April 2021, the 25-year-old became the first Bellator fighter to earn a win in the Showtime era.

Currently fighting out of Crestview, Fla., Cody Herbert (2-0) will be making his Bellator debut following two bare knuckle MMA fights in Florida late in 2021.

Bellator 274 fight card

The current Bellator 274 fight card looks as the following:

Main Card

  • Neiman Gracie vs. Logan Storley
  • Andrey Koreshkov vs. Mukhamed Berkamov
  • Georgi Karakhanyan vs. Adam Piccolotti
  • Davion Franklin vs. Said Sowma

Preliminary Card

  • Mandel Nallo vs. Nick Browne
  • Christian Edwards vs. Kevin Haley
  • Jaylon Bates vs. Chris Disonell
  • Aviv Gozali vs. Bobby King
  • DeAnna Bennett vs. Justine Kish
  • Brennan Ward vs. Brandon Bell
  • Jordan Newman vs. Cody Herbert
  • Justin Montalvo vs. Corey Samuels
  • Isaiah Hokit vs. Theodore Macuka
  • Orlando Mendoza vs. Jonathan Di Lorenzo

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