The night will also feature the Florida return on fan favorite and World’s #1 ranked 115 pounder Jessica “Jag” Aguilar.
Only 24-years-old, “The Caveman” David Rickels enters the Lightweight Tournament Finals with his sights set on that $100,000 Tournament prize. Known for his tenacious, grinding style, Rickels is fully aware of what his challenger brings to the table.
“I’ve got all the respect in the world for Saad,” Rickels said. “The guy has two huge knockouts in this tournament, but not too many men have been able to stand with the Caveman, and that’s not going to change March 28th.”
Calling Awad’s two knockouts “huge” may be an understatement, as the California native has spent just 74 seconds inside the Bellator cage this season with first round finishes over Guillaume DeLorenzi and Will Brooks. With both challengers bringing a frenetic pace to the cage, fireworks should be in order March 28.
The Light Heavyweight Finals are set as a pair of giant slayers enter the cage as Mikhail Zayats, the proud owner of a TKO victory over MMA legend Babalu Sobral battles “The Hardcore Kid” Emanuel Newton, who punched his ticket to the finals with a spinning back fist victory over tournament favorite King Mo.
“I shocked the world once, and I’ll do it again March 28th,” Newton said. “After this tournament, everyone is going to know who Emanuel Newton is, and I’m going to be coming for that belt.”
For Aguilar, the 14-4 submission ace brings an impressive resume into the Sun Dome with victories over Megumi Fujii, Carla Esparza and Lisa Ellis. With a five-fight win streak in place, the veteran Aguilar is looking to keep the momentum going with a victory over Patricia Vidonic March 28th.
“Bellator is my home and I can’t wait to get back into the cage in front of all my friends, family and fans and continue to show the world I’m the best female fighter on the planet,” Aguilar said.
The event will air live on Spike TV, as well in Spanish language on mun2.
The full card for Bellator MMA’s March 28 event is below:
Lightweight Tournament Finals: David Rickels vs. Saad Awad
Light Heavyweight Tournament Finals: Emanuel Newton vs. Mikhail Zayats
Welterweight Feature Fight: Luis Melo vs. Trey Houston
Featherweight Feature Fight: Joe Taimanglo vs. Shah Bobonis
Female Feature Fight: Felice Herrig vs. Heather Clark
Female Feature Fight: Jessica Aguilar vs. Patricia Vidonic
Heavyweight Feature Fight: Rob Horton vs. Augusto Sakai
Lightweight Feature Fight: Bruno Carvalho vs. Edson Berto
Welterweight Feature Fight: Ivan Devalle vs. Rory Shallcross
Lightweight Feature Fight: Patrick Cenoble vs. Tony Fryklund
Welterweight Feature Fight: Julien Williams vs. Kenny Moss