Bellator 286 Review

Bellator 286
AJ Mckee and Spike Carlyle put on an entertaining fight at Bellator 286. Photo Credit: MMA Junkie/MMA Junkies staff/BellatorMMA

Bellator 286 took place Saturday night from Long Beach, California on Showtime. The card featured a featherweight title fight between 3x Bellator champion Patricio “Pitbull” Freire and top contender Adam Borics. While the Co-Main Event showcased AJ Mckee vs Spike Carlyle.

CO-Main Event: Mckee vs Carlyle

Former Bellator Featherweight Champion AJ Mckee (19-1) made his lightweight debut Saturday night as he moved up to 155 pounds. This is following his split decision defeat to the current Featherweight Champion Patricio Pitbull.

He faced a tough test however in the form of Spike Carlyle (14-4). Who had recently been cut from the UFC but since has gone on a five-fight winning streak. Carlyle went 1-2 in the UFC with loses to veterans Bill Algeo and Billy Quarantillo.

This fight started off fast as Carlyle immediately pushed the pace and was throwing wild combinations. In the middle of a flurry Mckee caught him with a well-timed knee that knocked Carlyle down. From the ground Carlyle maintained composure as Mckee battled for positions, being reversed at the end of round one.

In round two Carlyle initiated the takedown but received a cut over his eye from a well-placed elbow by Mckee. This was a big story for the remainder of the fight as Carlyle had blood pouring out of his eyebrow area for the final round and a half.

Mckee utilized his range on the feet through effective jabs and kicks at distance, while also enjoying a grappling advantage on the floor. Spike Carlyle was tough enough to survive to the final bell however as Mckee won this matchup by Unanimous decision (29-26, 30-27, and 30-26).

Main Event: Patricio “Pitbull” Freire Vs Adam Borics

The main event of Bellator 286 took place at around 11 O’clock Saturday night. This fight was a technical and strategic battle that saw Bellator veteran Patricio “Pitbull” win an easy Unanimous decision victory. He dictated the pace and pressure of the fight on the feet.

Patricio also showed parts of his game that we normally do not see including takedowns and top control from the ground. Borics is an intriguing prospect at just 29 years old however showing potential on the feet in this fight.

While the loss to the champion should only help him in terms of experience going forward. After five rounds the judges scored the main event (48-47, 49-46, and 50-45) all in favor of the champion Patricio Freire.

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