Tonight in New Orleans, while most local eyes will be focused on the budding NFL season, Bellator 28 goes down at the Mahalia Jackson Theater for the Performing Arts. Fox Sports Net will broadcast the card, which features a few UFC veterans and the Bellator debut of top prospect Eric Larkin. Check Local listings for Broadcast time.
Rich Clementi (37-16-1) vs. Carey Vanier (9-3)
Vanier will return to action for the first time after Toby Imada bounced him in the second round of the last Bellator lightweight tournament. Clementi has had trouble dealing with wrestlers in the past. However, Clementi has a respectable submission game. On top of that, Vanier has slowed down a lot late in his fights.
Pick = Rich Clementi
Matt Horwich (25-15-1) vs. Eric Schambari (12-2)
Horwich is coming off a surprising win over former UFC title challenger Thales Leites. However, since 2008 he is just 2-6. Schambari is well versed on the ground and should be able to avoid any attack Horwich throws at him. Look for him to pick his spots on the feet and take a decision victory.
Pick = Eric Schambari
Georgi Karakhanyan (13-2-1) vs. Anthony Leone (8-1)
Karakhanyan has shown an extremely well-rounded game during his brief Bellator tenure. He also deserved the nod over eventual champion Joe Warren, but that is a story for another article. Leone will be the better wrestler. On the other hand, Karakhanyan will have a bigger advantage on the feet and off his back. Look for him to score from all position and eventually finish the fight on the feet.
Pick = Georgi Karakhanyan
Marcus Andrusia (1-0) vs. Eric Larkin (2-0)
In 2003, Larkin finished his collegiate career with an and undefeated season and an NCAA title. He was also a four-time All-American and a four-time Pac 10 Champion. Andrusia is coming in with a paltry 1-0 record. Even though Strikeforce is the master at getting their choice fighters wins, Bellator has stepped up their game here.
Pick = Eric Larkin