Bellator MMA officials have announced the addition of a pair of action-packed match-ups for the launch of the promotion’s 2015 season, as featherweights Bubba “The Highlight Kid” Jenkins (8-1) and Georgi “Insane” Karakhanyan (23-4-1) clash at the campaign’s debut Bellator: Pitbull vs. Straus event, and fast-rising, welterweight superstar Michael “Venom” Page (7-0) meets undefeated prospect “Curtious” Curtis Millender (7-0) six weeks later at Bellator: The British Invasion.
Bellator MMA President Scott Coker announced the two sure-fire thrillers while a guest on Monday’s new edition of “The MMA Hour.”
“We have some fantastic plans for 2015, and I can’t wait for fans to see what we’ve been working on behind the scenes,” Coker said following the announcement. “These two new match-ups both look incredibly exciting on paper, and I really think these first two events will set an incredible pace for the New Year that we’ll be looking to keep for all of 2015.”
Featuring a Bellator featherweight title fight between Brazilian striker and current champ Patricio Pitbull (22-2) and former champion Daniel Straus (23-5), Bellator: Pitbull vs. Straus takes place on Friday, Jan. 16, at Pechanga Casino Resort in Temecula, Calif.
Jenkins vs. Karakhanyan serves as the night’s co-main event.
Meanwhile, with British slugger Paul Daley (35-13-2) challenging Douglas Lima (26-5) for his Bellator welterweight title and undefeated Englishman Liam McGreary (9-0) trying to take the Bellator light heavyweight title from champion Emanuel Newton (25-7-1), Bellator: The British Invasion takes place on Friday, Feb. 27, at Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Conn.
Page vs. Millender will be the fifth and final main-card match-up at the event, which features five of the United Kingdom’s top fighters.
Tickets for Bellator: Pitbull vs. Straus and Bellator: The British Invasion are on sale now and can be purchased at Bellator.com. Both events air live on Spike TV following preliminary bouts that stream on Spike.com.
Bellator: Pitbull vs. Straus
Friday, Jan. 16
Pechanga Casino Resort
Featherweight Title Fight: Champ Patricio Pitbull (22-2) vs. Daniel Straus (23-5)
Featherweight Feature Fight: Bubba Jenkins (8-1) vs. Georgi Karakhanyan (23-4-1)
Bellator: The British Invasion
Friday, Feb. 27
Mohegan Sun Arena
Welterweight Title Fight: Champ Douglas Lima (26-5) vs. Paul Daley (35-13)
Light Heavyweight Title Fight: Champ Emanuel Newton (25-7) vs. Liam McGeary (9-0)
Light Heavyweight Feature Fight: Sokoudjou (16-12) vs. Linton Vassell (14-4)
Heavyweight Feature Fight: Bobby Lashley (12-2) vs. James Thompson (20-14)
Welterweight Feature Fight: Michael Page (7-0) vs. Curtis Millender (7-0)