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Bellator 232: MacDonald vs. Lima 2 staff picks and predictions

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The Bloody Elbow staff has made its predictions for Bellator 232, and they’re a bit lopsided. Everyone is picking Douglas Lima to get the better of Rory MacDonald in the rematch, thus becoming welterweight champ once again (as well as earning a $1 million prize). We are split on the co-main between Paul Daley and Saad Awad.

Note: Predictions are entered throughout the week and collected the day before the event. Explanations behind each pick are not required and some writers opt not to do so for their own reasons. For example, if Phil Mackenzie entered all of his predictions on Wednesday without adding in any explanations, he has no idea if he’s going to be the only one siding with one fighter for any given fight.

Rory MacDonald vs. Douglas Lima

Mookie Alexander: MacDonald is probably fortunate he’s still in the tournament given the awful showing against Jon Fitch. He looked much better against Neiman Gracie and survived Gracie’s attempts to submit him, but he hardly looked dominant on the feet. The rematch against Lima is largely contingent upon how successful Douglas will be in keeping the bout standing, or at least avoid having the bout dictated on Rory’s terms. If he can work the jab and leg kicks early to prevent MacDonald from getting even a half-decent start, then I think Rory is going to steadily fall apart and Lima will knock him out. I’m of course a big Douglas Lima fan and would love to see him be champion again, but that aside, I feel like Lima is still in the prime of his career and Rory is not. Douglas Lima by TKO, round 3.

Zane Simon: I know he won last time out, but I’m still not liking a lot of Rory’s game these days, or where it sounds like his head is at. He just doesn’t seem like a fighter who wants to strike anymore. If he can hit takedowns and win scrambles, he may still win this fight, but I’ll take Douglas Lima to get it in the rematch. Douglas Lima via decision.

Staff picking MacDonald:
Staff picking Lima: Stephie, Ed, Zane, Mookie, Nick, Dayne

Paul Daley vs. Saad Awad

Mookie Alexander: Awad can wrestle and he can hit hard. This is a reasonably tough fight for Daley with the late opponent switch. That said, Awad has been cracked before and Daley still possesses a wicked left hook and historically has been hard to hurt. He has the better chin, the bigger power, and a more crafty stand-up game. Just please don’t bless us with another NCAA Division I Wrestler Paul Daley performance… Paul Daley by KO, round 2.

Zane Simon: Daley keeps surprising me with his ability to deliver power and play what has always seemed like an almost comically limited game in the welterweight division. But, it’s hard for me not to see a man that got out-wrestled by Michael Page out there. Awad’s chin has been cracked, and he’s no kind of lock against more physical opponents. But, I think he has consistency on his side here as long as he’s willing to do anything other than stand in the pocket and trade hooks. Saad Awad by decision.

Staff picking Daley: Nick, Dayne, Stephie
Staff picking Awad: Ed, Zane, Mookie

Patrick Mix vs. Isaiah Chapman

Mookie Alexander: Mix looks like a very exciting prospect with a dangerous submission game that can trouble just about anyone. Chapman is coming in on very late notice and… well he hasn’t beaten anyone semi-notable. I think we know how this ends. Patrick Mix by submission, round 1.

Staff picking Mix: Ed, Zane, Mookie, Nick, Dayne, Stephie
Staff picking Chapman:

Nick Newell vs. Manny Muro

Mookie Alexander: It’s a showcase fight for Newell, and while that has had a horrible habit of blowing up in Bellator’s faces, Newell isn’t one to struggle mightily against heavy underdogs. Muro has lost three of his last four, so… you know what the outcome for this one. Nick Newell by submission, round 1.

Staff picking Newell: Ed, Zane, Mookie, Nick, Dayne, Stephie
Staff picking Muro:

Poll

Who wins?

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    Rory MacDonald

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    Douglas Lima

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