Mousasi stalked Salter from the beginning of the fight. In the opening round, Salter secured a takedown but was unable to keep “The Dreamcatcher” grounded. Mousasi quickly got back to his feet. In the clinch, Mousasi delivered knees to the body of Salter.
In the second frame, Mousasi began to take over the bout. He pressured Salter with punches and kicks. Midway through the round, Salter took Mousasi down. Moments later, Mousasi reversed the position and landed punches and elbows to end the stanza.
In the third round, Mousasi stuffed an early takedown attempt. Salter tried again to get the champion down, but Mousasi sprawled and gained top position. He postured up and delivered punches and elbows until referee Dan Miragliotta had seen enough. The official stoppage came at 2:07 of the third round.
“He’s a southpaw so everything is more difficult. It was a little bit more difficult to get my punches in, but other than that I felt good,” Mousasi said after the win.
“I’m way stronger than people think. Maybe I look skinny but I’m a lot stronger and physically I was the stronger guy in there. On top, I felt like I could just pressure him, put my weight on him and hurt him with my punches. Make him feel the pressure. It was a five-rounder so in my mind, I’m saying ‘Okay, don’t do everything now because we can go five,’” he said.
The win was Mousasi’s first title defense in his second Bellator MMA middleweight title reign.
Bellator 264 Official Results:
- c-Gegard Mousasi (48-7-2) defeated #1-John Salter (18-5) via TKO (punches) at 2:07 of round three
- Andrey Koreshkov (24-4) defeated #10-Sabah Homasi (15-10) via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-26, 30-26)
- #4-Raufeon Stots (17-1) defeated #3-Magomed Magomedov (18-2) via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)
- #7-Davion Franklin (4-0) defeated Everett Cummings (15-1) via KO (punches) at :21 of round one
- Khadzhi Bestaev (11-4) defeated Ty Gwerder (5-3) via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
- Pam Sorenson (9-3) defeated Roberta Samad (5-1) via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
- Jeffrey Glossner (3-2) defeated Sebastian Ruiz (2-4) via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28-29-28)
- Jon McNeil (1-0) defeated Orlando Mendoza (0-1) via TKO (punches) at 3:57 of round three