Ryan Bader will fight Fedor Emelianenko for the Bellator Heavyweight World Championship this weekend at Bellator 290, which will take place at the Kia Forum in Inglewood, California.
Bellator 290: Bader vs. Fedor 2 is the promotion’s first fight card of 2023 and the main card will air live on CBS. The event will also be available to watch on Paramount+ (USA) and BBC iPlayer (UK).
CBS will be airing an MMA event live on the network for the first time since 2010.
This will be Emelianenko’s final fight of his career and lots of fans will tune in to watch.
When Is Bellator 290?
Date: Saturday, February 4th 2023
The Bellator 290 main card is scheduled to begin at 9:00 PM ET. There are three fights scheduled for the main card and 11 fights scheduled for the prelims, but that’s subject to change.
Here are the three main card fights for Bellator 290:
Ryan Bader vs. Fedor Emelianenko (Bellator Heavyweight World Championship)
Johnny Eblen vs. Anatoly Tokov (Bellator Middleweight World Championship)
Sabah Homasi vs. Brennan Ward (Welterweight Fight)
Bader vs. Emelianenko Preview
Fight Odds: Bader (-250) vs. Emelianenko (+180)
Bellator 290: Bader vs. Fedor II will be the second time these two veterans have fought.
Bader (30-7-0-1) is 8-2-0-1 since joining Bellator in 2017. That includes a TKO win against Emelianenko in just 35 seconds at Bellator 214 in 2019. Bader is only 3-2 in his last five fights, though.
Bader lost to Vadim Nemkov at Bellator 244 (TKO) and Corey Anderson at Bellator 268 (TKO). Since the loss to Anderson, Bader is 2-0 with decision wins against Valentin Moldavsky and Cheick Kongo.
Emelianenko (40-6-0-1) hasn’t been actively fighting as much lately. He’s 46 years old and will retire after this fight regardless of the result, but he’ll want to end his career with a victory.
Since losing to Bader, Fedor is 2-0 with wins against Quinton Jackson (TKO) and Tim Johnson (KO).
When Emelianenko steps into the cage, one thing’s almost certain, someone will get knocked out. Fedor has seen his last six fights and ten of his last 12 fights end in the first round by TKO/KO.
Bader vs. Emelianenko Predictions
Best Bet: Fedor Emelianenko ML (+180)
We’re getting a good price on Fedor to win this fight and with it being his last career fight, I expect him to come out and put his best performance on. This will be tougher than his last two fights, though.
Fedor wasn’t tested by Jackson or Johnson in his last two fights. Bader is 39 years old, but still in great fighting shape. However, Bader has been knocked out five times, including twice since 2020.
This isn’t going to be a technical fight by any stretch, but it still has plenty of intrigue.
Someone is going to get knocked out in the Bellator 209 main event. The first fight seemed like a bit of a fluke punch landing to finish Fedor and I expect him to be much more prepared on Saturday night.
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