DIllon Danis’ pro mixed martial arts career got off to a successful start on Saturday night.
The 24-year-old jiu-jitsu standout from New York made short work of Kyle Walker in the main-card opener at Bellator 198 in a 175-pound catchweight bout. He needed just 1:38 to win via toehold submission at Allstate Arena in Rosemont, Ill.
Walker, who brought a 2-3 record into his bout with Danis, appeared to be handpicked by Bellator as an opponent — the Illinois native lost each of his two previous bouts via submission in under two minutes.
But Walker got the better of things in the standup, landing solid overhands that connected. Danis then pulled guard, where he was clearly in his comfort zone. It didn’t take long for Danis to transition to his submission.
Danis trained for the bout at SBG Ireland, and he mirrored the bluster of SBG’s most famous competitor, his friend Conor McGregor, in his postfight interview.
“I feel great,” Danis said. “I said this before I came in, no one would ever experience submissions like this in MMA.”