Rizin FF vs. Bellator results: Gadzhi Rabadanov drops Koji Takeda early, wins unanimous decision

Gadzhi Rabadanov got Bellator started on the right foot.

The Bellator lightweight got a win for the promotion in the company’s head-to-head clash against Rizin FF. Rabadanov (19-4-2) defeated Koji Takeda (14-4) in a closely contested, three-round bout at Saturday’s Rizin FF vs. Bellator event in Japan.

The event took place at Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, near Tokyo. The main card airs on Showtime via tape delay at 9 p.m. ET.

Rabadanov made a statement early in the fight to head start in the judges scorecards. After a feeling out process, Rabadanov dropped Takeda with aright hand and continued to pour on the pressure. Rabadanov would drop the Japanese fighter once again and put him in further trouble, before Takeda recovering and getting back in the fight.

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The second round was by far the most competitive round. Takeda won a lot of the clinch position battles and landed many good shots. Rabadanov had his moments, but he looked to be tiring and was far less effective than Round 1.

The final round was a good one for Rabadanov, He took back control of the fight using his wrestling and forward pressure. Although Takeda had good defense, it was pretty clear who was on the attack.

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With this win, Rabadanov closes out 2022 with a 3-0 run. The Khabib Nurmagomedov protoge had picked up unanimous decision wins over Jay Jay Wilson and Bobby King under the Bellator banner prior to his Rizin FF bout. Rabadanov is on a five-fight wining streak, with his most recent defeat being in 2020 against Mehdi Dakaev at EFC 30.

On the other hand, Takeda saw a two-fight wining streak come to an end. He had defeated former UFC fighter Johnny Case and former Bellator fighter Zach Zane in the lead up to the fight against Rabadanov.

For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for Rizin FF 40: Rizin vs. Bellator.

Story originally appeared on MMA Junkie