Before the bell: October edition

Scary things happening this month in MMA


Angela Lee (right) and Xiong Jing Nan (left) battle for position against the cage during One on Prime Video 2 on Sept. 30 (via ONE Championship).

October hosts one of the most anticipated title fights of the year, UFC 280, along with some new prospects bursting on the scene. There is a frightening amount of talent in this month’s MMA preview, with over 100 live events taking place all over the world. Here are some of the best events to add to your calendar this month.

Before diving in, let’s take a look at all the mayhem that unfurled in the fight world since the last recap. The events highlighted from September were extremely entertaining, resulting in some decisive victories and close decisions.

September results (Main event/co-main)

  • UFC 279: Nate Diaz finished off Tony Ferguson with a guillotine choke in the fourth round, and Khamzat Chimaev quickly submitted Kevin Holland in the first.
  • Sandhagen vs Song: Cory Sandhagen technically dispatched Song Yadong, finished by doctor stoppage after the fourth due to a terrible cut near Yadong’s eye. Gregory Rodrigues came back from a similar brutal gash between his eyes to TKO Chidi Njokani with a barrage of strikes in the second.
  • Bellator Dublin: Benson Henderson silenced the home crowd with a unanimous decision victory over Peter Queally, and Yoel Romero knocked out Melvin Manhoef in round three of the co-main. Manhoef announced retirement to his legendary career shortly after.
  • One On Prime Video 2: Xiong Jing Nan defended her world title from Angela Lee in an epic back-and-forth war. The judges saw the battle for Xiong Jing Nan who walked away with the unanimous decision victory. Mikey Musumeci won the trilogy and the Inaugural Flyweight Submission Grappling championship against Cleber Sousa.
  • Bellator 286: Patricio Pitbull defended his Featherweight title against Adam Borics in a unanimous decision performance. The co-main event saw A.J. McKee defeat the extremely tough Spike Carlyle in a fast-paced brawl and a true test at McKee’s new weight class.

October events and news:

After a pair of successful streams, One on Prime Video 3 will look to carry momentum for the partnership forward (via @OneChampionship/Twitter).

One on Prime Video 3: Lineker Vs Andrade

Three belts are on the line in this exciting event which will be broadcast live in the United States primetime from Axiata Arena in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

John Lineker has been on a four-fight winning streak since he left the UFC and is scheduled to defend his Bantamweight Title against Fabricio Andrade, who is on a seven-fight winning streak himself. Someone’s winning streak has to come to an end in this title fight showdown main event.

A late addition to this card will see the crowning of two new champions. First, Kade Ruotolo will be competing against Uali Kurzhev in the Inaugural ONE Lightweight Submission Grappling Championship. During the co-main event, ONE Kickboxing Champion Regian Eersel will go for a second title as he shows down with Thai sensation Sinsamut Klinmee in the Inaugural ONE Lightweight Muay Thai Title.

At no extra charge for regular subscribers, these contested bouts and more will be featured on Amazon Prime Video on Oct. 21 at 5 p.m.

UFC 280: Oliveira vs. Makhachev

Former champion Charles “Do Bronx” Oliviera is looking to make a statement and recapture the Lightweight Championship in one of the most highly anticipated title fights of the year. He will be fighting Dagestani title contender Islam Makhachev at the main event of UFC 280 at Etihad Arena in Abu Dhabi.

In the co-main event, Bantamweight Champion Aljamain Sterling returns after his last successful title defense in April and is scheduled to fight former champion T.J. Dillashaw. This match will decide who reigns on top of this stacked division.

A motivated Petr Yan also looks to regain his next shot at the Bantamweight title after losing in the aforementioned title fight. Yan has an added incentive to derail the hype that has skyrocketed striker “Suga” Sean O’Malley to be considered one of the most popular fighters at 135 pounds. The event is full of action from start to finish so these are just a few of the key names featured on the main card.

A loaded fight card oozing with international talent always means an early start time, so don’t forget to set an alarm on Oct. 22 to be ready for a 7 a.m. prelim and 11 a.m. main card start time on ESPN+/PPV.

Bellator 287: Piccolotti vs Barnaoui

Looking to carry the momentum from several successful global events, Bellator Lightweight takes the international fight stage to the Allianz Cloud Arena in Milan, Italy.

Bellator Lightweight Adam Piccolotti wants to start a fight streak in 2022 but will face a tough challenge Mansour Barnaoui. Barnaoui will be making his promotional debut in this main event on a seven-fight finish streak, including five impressive finishes by submission.

In the co-main event, Fabian Edwards will face off against Charlie Ward. While Ward hopes for an upset, Edwards looks to cement his position as the next title contender for the Bellator Middleweight title.

Bellator Milan will get the entertainment started off early Oct. 29 with an 11:30 a.m card, available on Showtime.

UFC Fight Night: Kattar vs. Allen

Later in the day, UFC gets settled back on home turf at the Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada, when Calvin Kattar and Arnold Allen have a do-or-die showdown for the next standout in the top 10 of the Featherweight division.

Going undefeated so far in the UFC, Arnold Allen looks to prove that he can stay healthy and active as he continues on his impressive 11-fight winning streak dating back to 2014, but his opponent Calvin Kattar has other ideas. After a quick turnaround from a close loss he is focused on competing against the elite in the division.

These two warriors are sure to put on fight of the night performances when this event airs Oct. 29 live on ESPN+ at 4 p.m.

New UFC prospects burst onto the scene:

Bantamweight Raul Rosas Jr. made history on Sept. 20 by becoming the youngest fighter ever to sign with the UFC at just 17 years old. Rosas put on a spectacular performance in his match on Dana White’s Contender Series, granting the 6-0 phenom his introduction to the premier MMA promotion.

Former Penn State Wrestling National Champion Bo Nickal has finally made it to the big leagues after two dominant performances on DWCS (Dana White’s Contender Series). Already calling out the top of the Middleweight division, Nickal has plans to dominate, but has plenty of work to do with a record of 3-0 and an equivalent amount of finishes.

Eddie Alvarez announces free agency:

“The Underground King” Eddie Alvarez has announced his departure from ONE Championship and his interest in pursuing free agency.

The former UFC and Bellator World Champion announced on the MMA Hour to journalist Ariel Helwani that he has interest in fighting for any promotion that offers him a worthwhile contract.

Alvarez teased the idea of a possible trilogy with Michael Chandler or rematch with Piorier and Gaethje in the UFC, but expressed that he is open to any logical offers and has major plans to broker a new deal somewhere in the coming weeks.

PFL plans for first PPV event in November:

The Professional Fighters League has announced big news for their 2022 Championships. This regular season formatted fighters league has been growing in popularity since signing with ESPN and plans to hold their first ever pay-per-view event on Black Friday, Nov. 25.

There are six championship fights scheduled for this event where competitors are battling for $1 million dollars on the line in each division. With extra showcase bouts being included featuring Shane Burgos vs. Marlon Moraes and the debut of Mohammed Ali’s grandson, the PFL is planning to make their first PPV a memorable one.

No price has been announced yet, but the PPV will be available on ESPN+ the day after Thanksgiving.

Anderson Silva vs. Jake Paul:

MMA fans worldwide will have their fingers crossed that they won’t see yet another name in the sport become victim to celebrity boxing at the hands of Jake Paul.

Anderson “The Spider” Silva was one of the most dominant MMA champions ever and is scheduled to box undeniably popular YouTube star Jake Paul in an 8 round match at a catchweight of 185 pounds.

Silva has been impressive since leaving the UFC with a decisive boxing victory over Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. and a finish of Tito Ortiz. Paul looks to prove the doubters wrong by taking on one of the most devastating strikers in MMA history.

Will the crafty 47-year-old combat sports veteran come out on top victorious or will the 25-year-old celebrity boxer make a statement by dispatching another MMA mainstay?

Another notable fight on the card will see recently retired UFC Middleweight Uriah Hall square off against Former NFL star running back Le’Veon Bell. Both athletes will be making their boxing debut in a four-round fight contracted at 195 pounds.

Remember that the world of MMA can be unpredictable, so all fight cards are subject to change due to unforeseen circumstances.

Enjoy one of the scariest months of the year with some extra blood from these top events. Don’t forget to protect yourself at all times and we will see you for the next rundown in combat sports.