After a week off due to the Thanksgiving holiday, Bellator returns on Nov. 30 to crown its first season-seven tournament champion. The promotion will visit Mount Pleasant, Mich., for Bellator 82, which is headlined by a welterweight match-up between former champion Lyman Good and undefeated Russian Andrey Koreshkov.

Good enters the contest having reeled off three straight wins since dropping a narrow split decision to current lightweight top contender Rick Hawn just 18 months ago. The inaugural 170-pound champion has his eyes set on a rematch with the promotion’s current divisional kingpin, Ben Askren.

If there is any fighter that justifies Bellator’s investment in the Russian market, it’s Koreshkov. The 22-year-old has ran through nearly everyone he’s faced, having only gone the distance once in his 12 career bouts.

Let’s take a deeper look at the match-up. And as a reminder, this is a side-by-side comparison of how the fighters’ skills matchup against one another using similar scoring to the unified rules.

Striking: Good – 10, Koreshkov – 10

Koreshkov (R) delivers a knee (Keith Mills/Sherdog)

On the feet, this fight will be a contrast of styles.

Good possesses a strong boxing base and has shown true power in his hands. Seven of his 14 career wins have come by way of strikes. Good has shown a propensity for closing the distance and working from in close. He’ll want to employ that same strategy against the flashy Russian.

As a disciple of two-time Bellator tournament champion Alexander Shlemenko, Koreshkov loves to utilize a variety of spinning and flying attacks. Like Good, the majority of his wins have come via stoppage, including a vicious knockout of former Dream champion Marius Zaromskis in his last outing.

Ground Game: Good – 9, Koreshkov – 10

Good (R) looks to finish his opponent (Keith Mills/Sherdog)

Neither of these fighters is known as a submission fighter, but this may be where the fight gets decided.

Only one of Good’s victories has come by way of tapout and in his nine Bellator appearances, he hasn’t showcased much in way of a ground game. Despite his lack of submission offense, he has never been finished on the mat, which could be crucial against the Russian.

Much like Good, Koreshkov hasn’t demonstrated a submission game in his brief Bellator career. However, the young fighter does have three submission wins to his credit. Most fighters that come out of RusFighters Sport Club have a strong Sambo base, and if this fight finds its way to the ground, the 22-year-old will have the edge.

Wrestling: Good – 9, Koreshkov – 10

Koreshkov (L) controls his opponent (Keith Mills/Sherdog)

In most match-ups between American and European fighters, the wrestling advantage goes the way of the American. But not in this fight.

Although Good is the more experienced fighter, he does not possess any high-level wrestling accolades. His takedown defense has been exploited in both of the losses on his resume (against the aforementioned Askren and Hawn). He will want to keep the fight standing, but he may not have the skill set to decide that.

Koreshkov has strong grappling credentials, including a gold medal in the 2010 Pankration World Championships. Although he has chosen to employ striking as his offense during his time in the Bellator cage, he has the wrestling skills to put Good on his back if he wants to. This could be the difference in the fight.


There’s experience and then there’s cage time. Good may only have four additional fights than Koreshkov, but he has spent much more time in the cage than the Russian (and against tougher competition). With neither fighter having been finished in their careers, this fight could come down to conditioning and who wants it more.

Scorecard: Koreshkov – 30, Good – 28

Verdict: Good is the former champion and he has his eyes set on getting his belt back, but he hasn’t faced anyone as explosive as Koreshkov. Both fighters are durable, so this fight is likely going the distance. With Koreshkov possessing the better grappling base, look for the Russian to take this fight on the scorecards and claim the tournament win.

Top Photo: Lyman Good (Dave Mandel/Sherdog)

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