I think it was Matt Hughes who once said, “It’s one thing to win a championships, it’s another thing to defend it.”
Bellator Middleweight champion and two-time tournament champion Alexander “Storm” Shlemenko will defend his championship against Doug Marshall in tonight’s Bellator 109 event.
If Shlemenko successfully retains his championship, it will be the second defense in his reign, but also he will have made history by having the most title defenses in the Bellator’s 185-pound division. UFC star and former Bellator champion Hector Lombard only had one successful title defense and that was against Shlemenko back in 2010.
Although only having two title defenses may not seem like a big accomplishment, we all need to remember that for a fighter retaining a championship is no easy task. Several UFC champions including Quinton Jackson, Lyoto Machida and Junior dos Santos only made one successful title defense during their reign.
There have only been three men to have more than one title defense in Bellator: Lightweight champion Michael Chandler (two), Pat Curran (two) and Ben Askren (four).
Shlemenko’s opponent is a former WEC Light Heavyweight champion, who also had two successful title defenses during his reign.
If the Storm defeats Marshall, he could become a dominant champion, similar to Askren when he was the Bellator Welterweight champion.
Who do you think will win this fight? Answer with a comment below, send a tweet to @alstover or email [email protected]