Bellator MMA is back in primetime on Thursday, Nov. 5 with a card headlined by an exciting battle featuring one of the promotion’s newest free agent acquisitions in Corey Anderson (13-5), who will make his highly anticipated Bellator debut against Dutch combat sports legend Melvin Manhoef (32-14-1, 2 NC) in the stacked light heavyweight division. The action emanates from Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Conn., where Bellator has held all its domestic shows since the promotion’s return to live events.
CBS Sports Network will air Bellator 251: Manhoef vs. Anderson LIVE in all U.S. markets, while preliminary matchups will stream on CBSSports.com and Bellator MMA’s YouTube channel. Additional bouts will be announced at a later date.
Legendary Dutch fighter Melvin Manhoef is one of the most feared and violent striking specialists in all of combat sports. With 29 of his 32 career victories coming by way of knockout, “No Mercy” boasts one of the highest knockout percentage rates of any MMA fighter with at least 15 victories. Manhoef has collected victories over iconic names in the sport, including Mark Hunt and Kazushi Sakuraba, throughout an illustrious career dating back to 1995, when he earned the first of many knockout victories at only 18 years of old. After stacking together two consecutive victories, including a TKO over Yannick Bahati in his last outing, Manhoef looks to spoil the much-hyped Bellator debut of Anderson in the main event of Bellator 251.
Rockford, Illinois’ Corey Anderson joined Bellator’s light heavyweight division this past August after opting to depart the UFC. The winner of The Ultimate Fighter season 19 was ranked fourth in the UFC’s 205-pound division at the time of his departure, having defeated top opponents, including current champion Jan Blachowicz, Johnny Walker, Ilir Latifi and Glover Teixeira. Prior to honing his MMA under world-renowned BJJ ace Ricardo Almeida, the 31-year-old became a two-time NCAA All-American wrestler and earned his degree in business administration from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater. “Overtime” will look to ascend to the top of a crowded Bellator light heavyweight class that includes champion Vadim Nemkov, Phil Davis, Ryan Bader, Lyoto Machida, newcomer Christian Edwards and former LFA champ Alex Polizzi.