Bellator 263 predictions — Patricio Pitbull vs. AJ McKee: Fight card, odds, picks, start time, live stream

It is practically time for the largest matchup in Bellator MMA historical past. The promotion is ready to crown a champion of its Bellator Featherweight World Grand Prix on Saturday evening in Inglewood, California, when reigning two-division champion Patricio Pitbull meets undefeated contender AJ McKee at Bellator 263. They’re the final two standing from the 16-man match that started all the way in which again in 2019.

Pitbull enters the bout as arguably the best fighter in promotional historical past. He is received the featherweight crown twice whereas making an astonishing seven defenses of the strap. He additionally earned the light-weight crown in 2019 with a first-round TKO of Michael Chandler. A win over McKee on Saturday would solely additional cement his legacy throughout the promotion and his standing as among the best fighters on the planet.

McKee, then again, enters on a 17-fight win streak the place he has seemingly gotten higher with each efficiency. Combating solely below the Bellator MMA banner, McKee may add the featherweight title to his assortment with Pitbull being the newest present or former champion on his resume.

Cannot get sufficient boxing and MMA? Get the newest on the earth of fight sports activities from two of the perfect within the enterprise. Subscribe to Morning Kombat with Luke Thomas and Brian Campbell for the perfect evaluation and in-depth information, together with the highest storylines to comply with for Bellator 263 this Saturday evening under.

Elsewhere on the cardboard in California, there is a ton of motion within the decrease weight lessons. The co-main occasion options one other intriguing bout within the featherweight division when Mads Burnell takes on Emmanuel Sanchez. Burnell, the previous Cage Warriors featherweight champion, enters the bout on a six-fight win streak with 5 of these victories coming by the use of stoppage. He is earned a pair of wins to begin his Bellator profession over the likes of Darko Banovic and Saul Rogers as he will get set to tackle the veteran in Sanchez. The 30-year-old combating out of Milwaukee has misplaced simply 4 instances in his prolonged 16 fights Bellator profession, with three of these losses coming to present or former champions. 

This is the battle card for Bellator 263 with the newest odds from William Hill Sportsbook.

Bellator 263 card, odds

Patricio Pitbull (c) -110

AJ McKee -110

Featherweight championship

Mads Burnell -135

Emmanuel Sanchez +115


Usman Nurmagomedov -1400

 Manny Muro+800


Islam Mamedov -220 Brent Primus +180 Light-weight
Goiti Yamauchi -160 Chris Gonzalez +135 160-pound catchweight

Bellator 263 viewing info

Date: July 31 | Begin time: 10 p.m. ET
Location: The Discussion board — Inglewood, California
TV Channel: Showtime | Reside stream: or the Showtime app (subscription required)


Brian Campbell: Each decade or so, throughout all sports activities, a phenom arrives to vary the principles. Does 26-year-old AJ McKee match that description for MMA? It is a query we simply would possibly discover out at Bellator 263. McKee (17-0) has fairly actually been calling for a battle in opposition to Pitbull since he turned professional below the Bellator banner in 2015. He has gone on to set promotional data for consecutive wins and featherweight marks for many submissions and finishes. The prolonged and dynamic southpaw has additionally backed up his huge discuss with three finishes within the Featherweight World Grand Prix, together with an eight-second knockout of Georgi Karakhanyan and a 71-second submission of Darrion Caldwell.  

Avoiding Pitbull’s harmful counter punches and tight guillotine will definitely be job one for McKee. However his built-in benefits of 4 inches in peak and eight inches in attain might be an issue for the defending champion. McKee is at his finest when he is flowing and responding to what his opponent places out, which may make for a sluggish begin as Pitbull usually does his finest work as a counter striker. However ought to the battle enter the championship rounds, McKee’s little used wrestling recreation — which his father/coach Antonio claims is essentially the most underrated a part of his arsenal — might be the deciding issue. McKee has confirmed all through the battle’s promotion that he is something however fearful of the massive stage or verbally sparring with Pitbull. Search for that very same confidence and poise to assist him discover a solution for the whole lot Pitbull makes an attempt to do in a technical masterpiece that goes the space. Choose: McKee by way of resolution

Brent Brookhouse: McKee presents some vital issues for Pitbull, not the least of which is his size. McKee is taller and rangier than nearly everybody Pitbull has fought in Bellator. Whereas Pitbull is commonly the smaller man in his fights, McKee is a unique animal, with a placing recreation that has come alongside properly to pair along with his grappling abilities. Pitbull should work out easy methods to get inside on McKee so he can go to work along with his looping bombs. As soon as Pitbull manages to get inside, he has to cope with McKee trying to put the battle on the ground the place he McKee has a robust edge so long as he can maintain himself out of Pitbull’s harmful guillotine choke. 

Regardless of McKee’s benefits on the bottom and within the purely bodily, Pitbull is a deserved favourite getting into the cage. He has confronted the upper stage of competitors whereas being a dominant drive for years. Pitbull may simply win the battle along with his placing alone and McKee will have to be cautious at each flip. That mentioned, McKee has been introduced alongside brilliantly and is able to take the following leap in his growth by changing into world champion. Search for some tense rounds earlier than McKee traps Pitbull in a nasty spot on the bottom and goes to work for a TKO win. Choose: McKee by way of TKO3

Brandon Smart: It is awfully tempting to take the challenger on this spot as a slight underdog if you could find the worth. McKee is extremely dynamic and has a number of methods to beat any opponent. However Pitbull didn’t get to this place in his profession with out having to study some arduous classes alongside the way in which. Whereas McKee absolutely can be a champion sometime, grinding out a troublesome loss like that is one thing that pushes you to turn out to be even higher. McKee will attempt to push the tempo early and sometimes, however the precision counter-striking of Pitbull will show to be simply an excessive amount of to beat over the course of some rounds. Anticipate Pitbull to proceed his reign as a dominant two-division champ. Choose: Pitbull by way of TKO3 | Bellator 263 predictions — Patricio Pitbull vs. AJ McKee: Battle card, odds, picks, begin time, stay stream


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