UFC & MMA Betting

PFL vs Bellator Predictions: Full Card, Undercard Betting Picks

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Riyadh is hosting the most extraordinary MMA event as several PFL current and former champions will clash with Bellator's finest. We selected the most intriguing bouts on that card and analyzed them for you. Here are our PFL vs Bellator predictions.

PFL vs Bellator Predictions: All Champion vs Champion Bouts

Originally, this card was supposed to feature four champion vs champion matches, making this an event like no other in history. However, two of the bouts had to be altered due to the injuries of Magomed Magomedkerimov and Jesus Pinedo. As a result, we now have two championship matches and one catchweight bout between a former champ and a current champ.

Ferreira vs Bader Prediction

Renan Ferreira is a behemoth of a man with a height of 6'8 (2.03 m) and 216cm reach. He may not be the most experienced fighter in terms of the number of professional fights but he is the latest winner of the PFL Heavyweight Tournament. Ten of his twelve pro wins came by knockout and his fights rarely reach the second round.

His opponent, Ryan Bader, may be inferior in size and strength but is far more experienced and has proven that he can beat bigger men. Unlike his opponent, he relies on wrestling and will probably try to take Ferreira down as soon as possible. Bader became the first-ever double champion in Bellator history, holding the light-heavyweight and heavyweight titles.

According to the odds, this will be the closest fight on the card. Despite his experience, we feel that Ferreira will have the advantage here and the outcome will depend on whether Bader can take control of the fight on the ground. We pick Ferreira for our PFL vs Bellator predictions.

• Ferreira to Win

Kasanganay vs Eblen Prediction

Impa Kasanganay has fought in multiple divisions throughout his professional career but most recently became the PFL Light Heavyweight champion. For this event, he agreed to return to Middleweight for the first time since joining the PFL roster.

Kasanganay is a versatile fighter who has both knockout power and the technical abilities to fight on the ground. Three of his five PFL matches en route to the title were early stoppages (2 KOs, 1 Submission).

Johnny Eblen enters this contest undefeated with a record of 14-0. He won the Bellator Middleweight World Championship in 2022 and defended it twice since then. He is a methodical fighter and can do it all but he is particularly skilled in wrestling.

Overall, this will either be the best fight on this card or an underwhelming technical fight. We believe that Eblen will win it and we also do not think that it will end early. We pick Eblen to win for our PFL vs Bellator predictions but it is also worth considering the odds for the decision.

• Eblen to Win

Cooper III vs Jackson Prediction

Originally, Jason Jackson was supposed to face Magomed Magomedkerimov in a Welterweight Champ vs Champ bout. The Russian withdrew from the contest and matchmakers had only one alternative – Ray Cooper III. The problem is that it is short notice and Cooper has had problems with weight cuts in the past, so they agreed to an 182-pound catchweight bout.

Ray Cooper III is a former two-time PFL Welterweight Champion (2019, 2021) and was once one of the most respected fighters on the roster. Unfortunately, he missed weight twice in his last three bouts and was also away from fighting for over a year between 2022 and 2023. Most recently, he had a terrible performance against Derek Brunson in November 2023.

Jason Jackson has been one of the stars in Bellator and his career peaked when he won the Bellator Welterweight World Championship in November 2023. He is also a former Welterweight champion of LFA, Titan FC, and VFC. He has brilliant takedown defense and knockout power, which is why we picked him for our PFL vs Bellator predictions.

• Jackson to Win

PFL vs Bellator Full Card Predictions: The Best of the Rest

Pitbull vs Braga Prediction

Patricio Freire is a legend of the sport despite never fighting for the UFC. He is a 3-time Bellator Featherweight World Champion and also held the Bellator Lightweight World Championship after beating Michael Chandler in 2029.

Freire will face the finalist from the 2023 PFL Featherweight Tournament, Gabriel Braga, after his original opponent, Jesus Pinedo, withdrew due to a back injury. This is a tough time for Braga as he is not only coming with just a week to prepare but he also lost his father a few weeks ago.

Unfortunately, we have to pick Pitbull for our PFL vs Bellator predictions. He is on a different level in terms of skills and Braga is going through a tough time.

• Pitbull to Win via KO/TKO

Cappelozza vs Nemkov Prediction

Vadim Nemkov was Bellator's Light Heavyweight champion between August 2020 and June 2023 when he vacated his belt after five defenses. Bruno Cappelozza is a former PFL Heavyweight champion (2021) who is going through a tough period in his career after a defeat and an NC in his last couple of bouts.

Nemkov agreed to move up in weight for this exciting event but we see no reason why that would be a problem for him. He is more skilled, more versatile, and more powerful than his opponent, which is why we picked him for our PFL vs Bellator predictions.

• Nemkov to Win via KO/TKO

Santos vs Romero Prediction

This is an interesting clash as both fighters once performed in the UFC. Thiago Santos was once a star in the promotion and even reached a title match against Jon Jones. Unfortunately, he picked up a whole list of injuries in that match, tearing a PCL, MCL, meniscus, and ACL within five rounds. Since then, it all went downhill for him and he lost four of his last six, only beating Johnny Walker and getting an NC against Rob Wilkinson.

Yoel Romero once fought for the UFC Middleweight Championship against Robert Whittaker, after winning nine fights in a row in the promotion. In a similar fashion, this was the last time we saw anything good from Romero and since 2017, he won only three of his eight bouts. He last fought for the Bellator Light-Heavyweight Championship against Vadim Nemkov in June 2023.

Overall, both fighters are at the end of their careers. Santos is 40 years old and Romero is 46, which is unbelievable. We believe that the fight will end in a decision and we are more inclined to pick Santos for our PFL vs Bellator predictions.

• Santos via Decision

Vlad is a former amateur MMA fighter. After a series of injuries, he found a different way to connect with the sport and its fanbase - through writing. He's been covering everything-UFC for over 5 years on various platforms and has been part of the team at NYFights since early 2022.