Bellator MMA has a main event set for their next visit to the Sooner state.
Featherweight promotional veteran Emmanuel Sanchez will rematch Russian journeyman Georgi Karakhanyan in the headlining slot of Bellator 218. The bout was announced by the promotion Sunday.
Sanchez (17-4, 9-3 in Bellator) is coming off a failed attempt at the Bellator Featherweight crown after dropping a judges decision to reigning champ Patrício “Pitbull” Freire at Bellator 209. Prior to that, Sanchez possessed a four-fight winning streak that included Karakhanyan from their first matchup back at Bellator 170 in 2017. Sanchez defeated the Russian fighter by way of majority judges decision in a closely contested bout. Sanchez was initially scheduled to face Ashleigh Grimshaw. However, the promotion announced that Georgi Karakhanyan replaced Grimshaw due to undisclosed reasons. Of Sanchez’ nine total Bellator victories, three have come by way of submission.
Karakhanyan (29-8-1, 8-5 in Bellator) is a 13-year veteran who is beginning his third stint with the promotion after last competing for Bellator in January of 2018. Karakhanyan first competed for Bellator back in the second season Bellator Featherweight tournament and made it to the semi-finals before losing to eventual tournament winner Joe Warren. Karakhaanyan has since competed for multiple promotions such as Tachi Palace and World Series of Fighting, both of which he won the Featherweight title.
Bellator 218 takes place on March 22 at the WinStar World Casino in Thackerville, Oklahoma. The event will air on Paramount Network and DAZN.