Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports
Bellator 256: Bader vs. Machida 2 is the second event organized by Bellator MMA in 2021. The headliner fight is a part of the Bellator Light Heavyweight World Grand Prix Tournament, the winner of which will advance to the semifinal.
Although the second fight between Ryan Bader and ex-UFC champion Lyoto Machida is the biggest fight of the event, there are plenty of other bouts worthy of your attention. In fact, Bellator 256 will have six fights on the main card, as well as eight preliminaries.
Bellator 256 Schedule
- Where: Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, CT
- When: Friday, April 9, 9:00pm ET
- How to Watch: Showtime
Bellator 256: Bader vs. Machida 2 Preview
Bader vs. Machida 2 Odds
|Ryan Bader Odds||Lyoto Machida Odds|
*Odds taken April 6.
Who Gets to the Semifinal of Bellator World Grand Prix?
Bader vs. Machida is a quarterfinal of the Bellator World Grand Prix Tournament. This is the second time these two fighters meet. Their first fight happened in 2012 when both were fighting under the banner of the UFC.
Lyoto Machida won that fight, but this time, it’s Ryan Bader, who is favored by oddsmakers. The reason? Bader is the former Bellator champ, whose most recent victory was against legendary Fedor Emelianenko.
Still, the odds of -290 on Bader do seem kind of extreme. Sure, he’s a fantastic fighter, but so is Machida. After all, he’s a former UFC champion.
Bader vs. Machida 2 Free Pick:
Other Bellator 256 Main Card Bouts
Liz Carmouche vs. Vanessa Porto Preview
|Liz Carmouche Odds||Vanessa Porto Odds|
Liz Carmouche is a former UFC fighter who wrote the history of the elite MMA competition. She took part in the first-ever women’s fight in the UFC back in 2013 against Ronda Rousey. Since then, she’s squared off with a number of female MMA superstars, including Miesha Tate, Jennifer Maia, and Valentina Shevchenko.
Aug 10, 2019; Montevideo, Uruguay; Valentina Shevchenko (red gloves) fights Liz Carmouche (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Antel Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jason Silva-USA TODAY Sports
With such a fighting pedigree, Liz needs to be thought of as the favorite against Vanessa, who never fought in the UFC. In fact, the fight on Friday is going to be her debut in Bellator MMA.
Liz Carmouche vs. Vanessa Porto Free Pick:
Jeremy Kennedy vs. Adam Borics Preview
|Jeremy Kennedy Odds||Adam Borics Odds|
Jeremy Kennedy (16-2) is entering this fight as the favorite. The fighter who spent two years fighting in the UFC is now ready to fight his second-ever Bellator fight. His promotional debut happened last November when he defeated Matt Bessette.
This time, he’s facing off with a much tougher opponent, who’s even ranked better in the Bellator Flyweight Rankings. Nevertheless, Kennedy does seem capable of getting a win.
Jeremy Kennedy vs. Adam Borics Free Pick:
Cat Zingano vs. Olivia Parker Preview
|Cat Zingano Odds||Olivia Parker Odds|
Cat Zingano is considered one of the most beautiful MMA fighters in the world. But, this beauty turns into a beast when she steps inside the cage.
Mar 3, 2018; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Cat Zingano defends against Ketlen Vieira during UFC 222 at T-Mobile Arena. Mandatory Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports
Proof of that is that Cat is currently #3 in the Bellator Women’s Featherweight Rankings. Her next opponent, Olivia Parker, is still unranked, which explains why she’s such a big underdog in this fight.
Cat Zingano vs. Olivia Parker Free Pick:
Julia Budd vs. Dayana Silva Preview
|Julia Budd Odds||Dayana Silva Odds|
Same as with the previous fight we covered, this one too should see no surprises. Julia Budd is the favorite for a reason – she’s a much better fighter than Dayana Silva.
Julia is currently #1 in the Women’s Featherweight Rankings, as well as #3 in Women’s Pound-for-Pound. It would be a huge upset if she didn’t win this fight easily.
Julia Budd vs. Dayana Silva Free Pick:
Dan Moret vs. Goiti Yamauchi Preview
After losing three straight fights in the UFC, Dan Moret moved to UAE Warriors before finally getting a contract with Bellator MMA. He’s making his promotional debut against #3 in the Bellator Lightweight Rankings Goiti Yamaguchi.
Yamaguchi is looking for his fourth straight win, which would also be his 11th win in Bellator. We think he’s going to get it.
Dan Moret vs. Goiti Yamauchi Free Pick:
Bellator 256 Preliminaries
In addition to main card fights, we’re also going to see many interesting preliminaries at Bellator 256. Those fights are, namely:
- Cody Law vs. Nathan Ghareeb
- Talita Noguera vs. Jessica Borga
- Diana Avsaragova vs. Tara Graff
- Cass Bell vs. Jornel Lugo
- Nainoa Dung vs. Izzy William
- Dalton Rosta vs. Tony Johnson
- Jaylon Bates vs. Jeffrey Glossner
- John Douma vs. Will Smith
The top two fights seem like the most exciting of all the preliminaries. Cody Law, who’s still undefeated in Bellator, is looking for his third straight win. We think he’s going to win it easily. And so should Talita Noguera, who challenged the Bellator Women’s Featherweight World Championship less than three years ago.