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Zach Freeman injured, Derek Anderson steps in to face Zak Bucia at Bellator 197

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Derek Anderson

Longtime Bellator lightweight Derek Anderson has his first fight of 2018.

“The Barbaric” is stepping in on short notice for Zach Freeman to face Zak Bucia in a 165-pound catchweight bout at Bellator 197 on April 13 at The Family Arena in St. Charles, Mo., officials announced Friday.

Officials told MMA Fighting that Freeman suffered an undisclosed injury.

In eight appearances for Bellator, Anderson has a 5-3 record with a pair of notable decision wins over Patricky “Pitbull” Freire. He fought once in 2017, losing a unanimous decision to Derek Campos last January.

Two subsequent bouts were canceled: a May bout vs. Michael Page due to a Page injury, and a December clash with Adam Piccolotti due to an Anderson injury. Anderson’s pro record stands at 14-3 with one no-contest.

Bucia was last seen losing a second-round submission to Neiman Gracie at Bellator 185 last October in what was his first appearance for the promotion. The 33-year-old holds an 18-9 record with 15 of those wins coming by way of knockout or submission.

See the updated Bellator 197 card below:

Brent Primus vs. Michael Chandler

A.J. McKee vs. Justin Lawrence

Logan Storley vs. Joaquin Buckley

Kevin Ferguson Jr. vs. Devon Brock

Rebecca Ruth vs. Juliana Velasquez

Derek Anderson vs. Zak Bucia

Dominic Mazzotta vs. Josh Sampo

Jordan Dowdy vs. Jeff Crotty

Adam Cella vs. Dewayne Diggs

Joe Roye vs. Cort Wahle

Justin Robbins vs. A.J. Siscoe

Jordan Howard vs. Eric Ellington


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