Bellator MMA returns on Saturday night with the Bellator 220 card going down inside the SAP Center in San Jose, California. The main card action begins at 10 p.m. ET and will be streaming live on DAZN. The main card features two championship fights at the top, with a World Welterweight Grand Prix quarterfinal matchup simultaneously being contested for the Bellator welterweight title serving as the headliner.
In the main event of Bellator 220, 170-pound champion Rory MacDonald makes his return to the cage against 41-year-old veteran Jon Fitch. The winner of the bout will not only walk out of the SAP Center as the Bellator welterweight champ, but they will move on in the promotion’s latest grand prix tournament to take on Neiman Gracie in the semifinals. In the co-main event, the women’s flyweight championship will be up for grabs as Ilima-Lei Macfarlane defends against Veta Arteaga.
Can’t get enough MMA? Subscribe to my podcast — State of Combat with Brian Campbell — where I break down everything you need to know in the cage.
Here’s a look now at the complete Bellator 220 main card set for Saturday night, with odds via William Hill Sportsbook provided for the welterweight title main event.
Rory MacDonald (c) -400 vs. Jon Fitch +275
Ilima-Lei Macfarlane (c) vs. Veta Arteaga
Women’s flyweight title
Phil Davis vs. Liam McGeary
Benson Henderson vs. Adam Piccolotti
Gaston Bolanos vs. Nathan Stolen
MacDonald (20-5-0) set out to make history in his last fight by becoming a dual-champion in Bellator but came up short as he was handilyin September 2018. While MacDonald is favored by many to emerge victorious in his first defense of the Bellator welterweight title since he captured it from Douglas Lima in January 2018, the former UFC welterweight title contender is not planning to overlook the grappling-expert Fitch (31-7-1) once that cage door closes Saturday night.
“I don’t like to take people lightly even if the odds are against them,” MacDonald told MMA Fighting. “Jon has proven himself to be a hard-nosed competitor whenever he gets in there against anyone, so it would be foolish of me to take a guy like that lightly just because he’s in his forties.
“He’s the guy that’s fought the who’s who and he’s fought everywhere,” he continued. “He’s fought for world titles and all kinds of things, he’s been a world champion himself, and he’s at the top of the sport for a long time, so it’s quite nice to be fighting guys of his caliber.”
With Fitch currently riding a five-fight winning streak which includes a victory in his Bellator debut over Paul Daley at Bellator 199 nearly one year ago, MacDonald is wise not to take this challenge lightly on Saturday.
Also on the main card, it’s the return of a pair of UFC veterans when Phil Davis and Benson Henderson make the walk to the cage. Davis is coming of a surprising loss to Vadim Nemkov in November that ended a three-fight winning streak. He takes on the always dangerous Liam McGeary. Henderson, meanwhile, is on a two-fight win streak and looking to continue to improve when he takes on Adam Piccolotti.
It was tough to watch MacDonald get thoroughly dominated by Mousasi in his quest to become a dual-titleholder, but the 29-year-old is now back in his element at welterweight and his comfort being back there should be evident here. Of course, as long as MacDonald stays away from Fitch pinning him to the mat and just draining time away, he’ll come out still the 170-pound champion and move on to defend his title against Gracie in June. He’ll do just that, and likely give us an exciting finish to prove that while he couldn’t climb to the top of the 185-pound mountain, he still owns the welterweight division. Pick: MacDonald via TKO4