With the summer of 2012 coming to an end, Bellator presents the ending to two tournaments in its 2012 Summer Series this Friday.

Bellator finally gets an ending to its bantamweight tournament from season six when Marcos Galvao takes on Luis Nogueira. One thing is certain here, and that is a Brazilian will win the championship and a bid against Bellator bantamweight kingpin Eduardo Dantas.

The fight pits together two tough fighters. This will be the second bantamweight tournament for Galvao, who previously lost to Alexis Vila in the season-five tourney. Nogueira defeated Vila in the current tournament’s opening round and now makes his way towards a title shot in his first trip through a Bellator bracket.

The fight will be interesting as both looked good in their last fight, and with a title shot on the line, both will assuredly try not to let the judges decide who gets the nod.

Also on the Bellator 73 main card will be the light heavyweight tournament semi-finals from the Summer Series, as the Slovakia’s Attila Vegh takes on the ever-tough Travis Wiuff. Wiuff is looking to earn a title fight with Christian M’Pumbu. Wiuff has already notched a win over M’Pumbu under the Bellator banner, but this time the title would be on the line.

While this card was suppose to feature a featherweight title tilt between Patricky Freire and Pat Curran, an injury to Curran has changed those plans. The main card will now be rounded out with a heavyweight fight between Ryan Martinez and Mike Wessel, as well as a light heavyweight bout between Mike Mucitelli and Matt Van Buren.

Bellator 73 airs live from Tunica Resorts, Miss., at the Tunica Hotel and Casino on Aug. 24. The main card is expected to air live at 8 p.m. ET on MTV 2 with the preliminary card airing live on Spike.com and Bellator.com at 7 p.m. ET and continuing after the main card at 10 p.m. ET.

BW Final: Marcos Galvao (12-5-1) vs. Luis Nogueira (14-2)
Marcos Galvao is finally close to earning that Bellator bantamweight title shot, and this time around he is just one fight away.

Nogueira (Keith Mills/Sherdog)

Galvao will have to get through Luis Nogueira, and it will a tough fight for Galvao. I don’t think Galvao—if he does win—gets the victory by finish, as he only has one career win that didn’t go the distance. In his last fight though, Galvao did look pretty good with his striking early on against Travis Marx and was able to land some good shots.

If Galvao can utilize his leg kicks like he did against Marx, Nogueira will have a hard time closing the distance, remaining the aggressor and getting the fight to the ground.

Nogueira also looked good in his last fight against Hiroshi Nakamura, eventually knocking out the Japanese bantamweight in the third. Nogueira pressed the action—much like Galvao against Marx—and was able to capitalize when he rocked Nakamura the second time.

If both fighters perform like they did in their previous fights, I think this has the making of a really good and interesting back-and-forth fight to the finish. I like Galvao’s chances to take the fight by decision, but I think Nogueira has a little magic left in him to earn his sixth career knockout victory and his second straight third-round knockout.

LHW Final: Attila Vegh (27-4-2) vs. Travis Wiuff (68-14)
I’ve said in past previews that Travis Wiuff isn’t the type of fighter to entertain you, but he is a huge winner. His 68 victories prove my point.

Wiuff (Peter Lockely/Sherdog)

Wiuff’s game plan will be to break the will of Attila Vegh utilizing the cage fence, clinch and top control to wear out Vegh. Wiuff is excellent at utilizing this game plan, and once he starts implementing it, there really is no hope for his opponent to turn the fight around.

Wiuff has good ground-and-pound and also does a very good job at finishing submission attempts. His style might not entertain the fans and impress them, but if you look beyond the boring aspects, it truly is a sight to watch him clinch the victory.

Vegh, on the other hand, utilizes excellent striking with good submissions. He is coming off a controversial win over Emmanuel Newton in the semi-finals, and if he fights like he did in the last fight, Wiuff will break Vegh down.

If Vegh wants to win this fight, he needs to keep his distance and not let Wiuff clinch with him or secure the takedown. Vegh also needs to avoid getting pressed against the cage fence.

Wiuff is a tough train to stop, and at this point it’s clear that he will face current Bellator light heavyweight champion Christian M’Pumbu in a rematch. Wiuff takes the fight by decision, and a grueling one at that.

HW: Ryan Martinez (7-1) vs. Mike Wessel (11-4)
Mike Wessel is a one-and-done UFC veteran and is coming off a 3-2 stint on the regional circuit. His lone UFC appearance was a TKO loss to Antoni Hardonk in December 2008.

Martinez (L) submits his opponent (April Pishna/ROF)

Wessel has pretty good power in his hands, earning seven wins by knockout—most of which have been TKO finishes. Wessel is a small heavyweight and he is facing another small heavyweight, so maybe his luck will turn around and he’ll win this fight and make his way towards the heavyweight tournament.

Wessel has never lost a decision and three of his four losses have come by knockout. That is something Ryan Martinez will look to take advantage of with his five career finishing victories—three of which come by knockout and one submission due to punches.

Martinez has pulled off five straight wins, including his last two coming under the Pro Elite banner. I think Martinez has what it takes to take the victory from Wessel and win the fight by TKO in the second.

LHW: Mike Mucitelli (2-0) vs. Matt Van Buren (5-0)

Van Buren (Keith Mills/Sherdog)

This is a fight that belonged on the undercard of Bellator 73, but due to the Pat Curran injury, it got boosted up onto the main card. Just to make my point, I keep mistakenly saying Martin Van Buren when I mean Matt Van Buren. That pretty much sums up the star power and drawing power of this light heavyweight fight.

Mike Mucitelli and Van Buren are both only a step into their young MMA careers with seven career fights between the two.

Van Buren is a veteran of Bellator and will be making his third appearance for the promotion in this fight. He has scored two early finishes in his previous two fights and will try to make it three to help secure another main card fight. Van Buren does have some nice hands and backs it up with some power. He also can finish this fight on the ground if given the opportunity.

Mucitelli hasn’t left the first round so far in his career, so that does raise some questions for me as to how deep his gas tank is and if he will be able to go the full length of the fight, if it goes that far.

I think that plays a factor and pretty much decides the fight for me. I’ll take Van Buren to earn a late TKO victory.


LW: Chris Coggins (6-2) vs. Zach Underwood (9-4)
Chris Coggins is coming off of a win after dropping a decision to the inspiring Nick Newell this past April. Coggins owns four victories by way of submission, all of which have been armbars. These two previously fought way back in May 2009, a fight Coggins took by decision. Coggins for the win, by decision once again.

LW: Cosmo Alexandre (2-1) vs. Harry Johnson (6-7)
This will be Cosmo Alexandre’s fourth fight in Bellator, and he is currently on a two-fight winning streak since dropping a decision to Josh Quayhagen in his first professional fight. Harry Johnson is 2-3 in his last five fights and has won all of his fights by either submission or knockout. I think Alexandre is a tough opponent who will cause Johnson to struggle. Alexandre by decision.

WW: Kelvin Tiller (4-1) vs. Amaechi Oselukwue (3-6)
Kelvin Tiller has had two Bellator fights and two wins for the promotion. He is great at submissions, earning three victories that way. Amaechi Oselukwue is 1-4 in his last five fights and has lost a majority of his outings by decision. I think Tiller hands Oselukwue his first career submission loss in the first round.

WW: Andy Uhrich (7-3) vs. Joe Williams (6-0)
Andy Uhrich owns six wins by finishes and will be fighting in his second major promotion fight. Uhrich previously fought on the now infamous Strikeforce: Nashville card, winning by submission. He has also previously fought in this venue, going 1-2. Joe Williams owns five victories by some sort of finish and will get his sixth here.

HW: Brian Albin (8-8) vs. Jacob Noe (7-1)
Jacob Noe is another former Strikeforce fighter, having fought once for the promotion. He has won five straight fights and now looks to reel off his sixth straight against Brian Albin. Noe owns finishes in six of his seven wins, four by way of submission. Albin is 2-4 in his last six fights, including a loss to Houston Alexander. I think Noe sends Albin to 2-5 in his last seven with a submission victory in the second round.

FW: Jay Black (0-1) vs. Brian Hall (3-1)
Brian Hall has never been to a decision in his career and has only been past the second round once, and that was in his first pro fight. It really isn’t a big deal against Jay Black, who only has one professional fight. It does stand out that Hall has won his last three fights, and that includes back-to-back first-round finishes heading into this one. Make that three in a row for Hall.

Top Photo: Marcos Galvao (Dave Mandel/Sherdog)

About The Author

Sal DeRose
Staff Writer

Sal hails from New Jersey and is currently training for his first MMA fight. He hopes to use his knowledge and insight to generate articles that interest and entertain you. Outside of MMA, Sal is a big fan of every other sport. He's a diehard New York sports fan, with the exception of cheering for the Packers.