Ben Askren walked into the Bellator cage on Wednesday night and completely dominated Andrey Koreshkov to win by stoppage in the fourth round to retain the Bellator welterweight title.
As the fight started, Koreshkov wanted to touch gloves but Askren wanted nothing to do with it as he went for a takedown. He started to control the fight with his wrestling and went for a guillotine choke.
Koreshkov was able to survive the submission attempt and began to work his way back to his feet. Askren would keep the fight on the ground and got the back of Koreshkov. He began to rain down his strikes to loosen up Koreshkov for a rear-naked choke.
He would be able to attempt a rear-naked choke but he was unable to lock in the submission. After adjusting his position, he would once again go for a rear-naked choke but Koreshkov would stop the attempt. The remainder of the round would remain on the ground and Koreshkov could not mount any offense.
In the second round, it would go back to the ground in the first 20 seconds and Askren was able to go from side control, to mount and then to the back of Koreshkov. As he had the back of Koreshkov, Askren asked the crowd to chant “USA.”
Askren continued to control the fight on the ground and passed to several positions and looked for multiple submissions as he landed his strikes. He would get the crucifix position and landed multiple strikes. Koreshkov attempted to get Askren off him but he was unable. The round would end in the position and the fight moved into the third round.
As the third round opened, Koreshkov was able to land a short knee but it could not stop the takedown of Askren. He went back to work on Koreshkov with his ground strikes and looking for submissions. Koreshkov was looking to find his way back to his feet but he was unable to and Askren had another dominating round as the fight headed to the championship rounds.
Askren would only need ten seconds to get the fight to the ground in the fourth round. He immediately looked for an arm triangle choke but Koreshkov would be able to survive the submission. Askren would continue to work his ground game and referee Jason Herzog told Koreshkov to show him something. Askren would flatten him out and Herzog came in to stop the fight.
Askren (12-0) has now won his last two fights by stoppage and this is his fourth title defense. He will now wait for the winner of the season seven tournament which will be decided in September when Douglas Lima faces Ben Saunders.
Bellator 97 Results:
Ben Askren def. Andrey Koreshkov via TKO (strikes) – Round 4, 2:58
Muhammed Lawal def. Jacob Noe via TKO (strikes) – Round 3, 2:51
Vitaly Minakov def. Ryan Martinez via TKO (strikes) – Round 3, 4:02
Patricio Pitbull def. Jared Downing via TKO (strikes) – Round 2, :54
Bubba Jenkins def. Mike Barreras via TKO (strikes) – Round 2, 1:05
Anthony Leone def. Frank Baca via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 3, 1:07
Rafael Silva def. Rodrigo Lima via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 3, 2:03
Will Brooks def. Cris Leyva via TKO (strikes) – Round 3, 2:20