Dan ‘The Handler’ Hornbuckle vs. ‘Bad’ Brad Blackburn booked for Bellator 25 in Chicago Aug. 19th

CHICAGO, Ill. (August 03, 2010) — Bellator Season 2 Welterweight Tournament runner-up Dan Hornbuckle will look to return to his winning ways following a June defeat suffered in the tournament championship when he faces off against the hard-hitting UFC veteran “Bad” Brad Blackburn at the historic Chicago Theatre on Aug. 19th as a special feature fight at Bellator 25.

Known for highlight reel knockouts and spectacular submissions, Hornbuckle (21-3-0) has handled 10 of his previous victims via KO or TKO, while finishing another 10 with his impressive ground game. The proud Native American cruised through the quarter and semifinal rounds of the Bellator Season 2 Welterweight Tournament with a pair of vicious first round submissions before eventually falling to former US Olympic wrestler Ben Askren in the finals.

With his last several fights being finished on the canvas in one form or another, Hornbuckle is eager to test himself against the experienced and dangerous veteran with an established reputation as a fellow knockout artist.

“Bad Brad is a really tough opponent and it’s going to be a good start to my win-streak,” said Hornbuckle. “Brad’s skill sets are going to complement mine and I’ll finally be able to unleash the The Handler’s stand-up without any wrestling tackles involved.”

With 26 fights spanning over a 9-year career, including notable stints in the IFL as well as the UFC, Blackburn (15-11-1) has compiled a number of impressive victories that include knockout stoppages of Pat Healy and Jay Hieron, along with notable wins over Ryo Chonan and Edgar Garcia. The Seattle native, who started training in boxing in his early 20s before quickly changing to MMA, says he is unafraid of Hornbuckle’s notoriously devastating stand-up game.

“Hornbuckle is a top-level fighter with a great record.  I’m excited to fight him, but I’m not scared of anyone’s striking in MMA,” said Blackburn. “I’ve been around for a long time, wherever this fight goes, I’ll be comfortable.  If he wants to stand and bang, let’s do it.”

“I’m thrilled that we are able to add another world class fight to an already stacked card,” said Bellator founder and CEO Bjorn Rebney. “Dan Hornbuckle is as hungry and dangerous as ever before and the same can be said for “Bad” Brad Blackburn. As an MMA fan I cannot wait to see this fight.”

Hornbuckle vs. Blackburn joins a talent-filled Fox Sports Net event that features undefeated heavyweight sensation Damian “The Polish Pitbull” Grabowski making his US debut in World Championship Heavyweight Tournament action against ground-and-pound specialist Scott Barrett.  Undefeated Division I NCAA Wrestling Champion Cole Konrad takes on Spanish submission specialist Rogent Lloret in another heavyweight tournament showdown.

Additionally, Zoila “Warrior Princess” Frausto takes on the world’s No. 6-ranked flyweight, undefeated Jessica Pene in an electrifying opening-round fight in Bellator’s World Championship Women’s Tournament, and much more.

For more information, visit Bellator.com, follow Bellator on Twitter @BellatorMMA or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/Bellator.

Tickets for the event are priced at $100, $75, $50, and $35, and are on sale NOW at www.Ticketmaster.com.

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