A decisive underdog, Fabricio Guerreiro got Shahbulat Shamhalaev exactly where he wanted him Saturday night at Bellator 120, scoring a submission victory with a perfectly-executed kimura.
Guerreiro (20-3) earned his second Bellator victory and got back on track after a decision loss to Patricio Freire in the Season 9 featherweight tournament semifinal last October.
“I knew I had a chance anywhere this fight went,” Guerreiro said. “I knew (the kimura) was there, I just had to stay with it and believe in it.”
The two waited to attack through the opening moments, but when Shamhalaev shot in for a single-leg, Guerreiro found his chance to strike. He loosened Shamhalaev up with punches to the head before working a kimura from his back.
When Shamhalaev tried to roll and better his defense to try and get out of the kimura, he was stuck on his back and against the fence. Guerreiro continued to apply pressure until he got the tap, which was his 13th career submission win.
Guerreiro was cast to the first season of The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil, but was knocked out in the entry round by Rodrigo Damm. He has posted a 3-2 mark in his last five fights.
“I was ready for everything,” he said. “I think the message is right there for everyone to see.”
Shamhalaev (12-3-1) has now lost two straight since an 11-fight unbeaten streak that included the Season 7 featherweight tournament title. He also lost his third professional bout to current UFC contender Khabib Nurmagomedov back in 2009 via kimura in the first round in Russia. In the video replay, it appeared as if Shamhalaev likely suffered a broken arm.