Just In Mir-Nelson 2, MacDonald-Lima 2 headline Bellator 231, 232 on back-to-back nights in Connecticut MMA Life

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STAMFORD, Conn. – Bellator’s return to Connecticut in October will feature back-to-back fight cards at one of the promotion’s regular stomping grounds.

Bellator 231 will take place on Friday, Oct. 25, at Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Conn. The next night, Bellator 232 goes down at the same venue, a person with knowledge of the consecutive events told MMA Junkie. The person requested anonymity because the promotion has not yet made an official announcement. That announcement is expected during Saturday’s Bellator 225 card at Webster Bank Arena in Bridgeport, Conn.

Bellator 231 will be headlined by a heavyweight rematch between Las Vegas residents Frank Mir (18-13 MMA, 0-2 BMMA) and Roy Nelson (23-17 MMA, 1-3 BMMA). That event will have a main card that airs on Paramount and streams on DAZN.

Bellator 232’s main event is the welterweight grand prix tournament final between champion Rory MacDonald (21-5-1 MMA, 3-1-1 BMMA) and former champ Douglas Lima (31-7 MMA, 13-3 BMMA), who meet in a rematch with MacDonald’s belt on the line. That event’s main card streams on DAZN.

Bellator also did events on consecutive nights at Mohegan Sun Arena in February with Bellator 215 and Bellator 216.

Mir and Nelson first fought in 2011 while in the UFC. Mir, a former UFC heavyweight champion, beat Nelson with a unanimous decision in the UFC 230 co-main event in Las Vegas. That win was the second in a three-fight streak that eventually got him a shot at then-champ Junior Dos Santos’ title, which he lost by second-round TKO.

After a U.S. Anti-Doping Agency suspension for a failed drug test, Mir made his Bellator debut in 2018 in the opening round of the heavyweight tournament. He was knocked out by Fedor Emelianenko in 48 seconds. In his follow-up at Bellator 212 this past December, he tapped to strikes against Javy Ayala after suffering a break in his jaw. The loss was his fourth straight.

Nelson needs to rebound, as well. After coming to Bellator from the UFC in 2017, he won his promotional debut with a unanimous decision over Javy Ayala. But at Bellator 194, he lost a majority decision to Matt Mitrione in the opening round of the heavyweight tournament. After a fight with Mirko Cro Cop was scrapped, he returned in October 2018, but was knocked out by Sergei Kharitonov with one second left in the first round. Nelson finally fought Cro Cop in February at Bellator 216, but lost a decision in Connecticut.

Bellator’s original plan was to have MacDonald and Lima meet in September, but MacDonald needed more time to recover from his win over Neiman Gracie in the Bellator 222 main event in June.

MacDonald and Lima fought at Bellator 192 in January 2018. MacDonald took a unanimous decision from the Brazilian to win the welterweight title.

MacDonald fought to a draw with Jon Fitch in the opening round of the tournament at Bellator 220 in April, but retained his title and advanced to the semifinals. There, he beat Gracie with a five-round decision at Madison Square Garden.

Lima beat former champ Andrey Koreshkov for a second time with a fifth-round submission in the opening round of the tournament at Bellator 206. Then he handed the previously unbeaten Michael Page his first loss in highlight-reel fashion at Bellator 221 in May to reach the final.

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