[ads2]ben-askren-1The Bellator MMA promotion returns to Albuqurque, New Mexico, on July 31 when welterweight champion Ben Askren looks to defend his title against Audrey Koreshkov in the main event of Bellator 97.

The night will also feature the long awaited conclusion to the Bellator Welterweight Tournament Finals as Douglas Lima takes faces Ben Saunders in a second epic battle, while featherweights collide as Patricio Pitbull returns to battle Rob Emerson.

The event has a special early start time and will broadcast LIVE starting at 5:00 p.m. MST on Spike. The preliminary card will be streamed LIVE and FREE on Spike.com starting at 4:00 p.m. MST. Tickets for the event are on sale now and can be purchased at ComcastTix.com or by visiting the Santa Ana Star Center Box Office with tickets starting at just $25 dollars.

Askren seems to be excited about getting in the cage again and showing improvements in his game while building on the momentum from his last fight:

“I’m really looking forward to getting back into that cage and putting on a show,” Askren said. “I feel like I’ve continued to mature and get better in every one of my fights, and July 31st should be no different. I don’t think Andrey has any ability to stop my wrestling and ground attack, so this will be another successful title defense.”

Koreshkov went (5-0) in 2012 and will look to end of title reign of Askren in devastating fashion:

“I’ll be 110% ready for this fight,” Koreshkov said. “I’ll make sure that Askren’s tactics to put everybody in the audience to sleep won’t work this time. Instead, I’ll keep everybody entertained by putting him to sleep.”

Stay tuned to ProMMAnow.com for more Bellator 97 news and coverage.

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