Sergio Pettis Denies Historic Patricio Freire Attempt, Sets Up Patchy Mix Fight

CHICAGO — Sergio Pettis played a historic spoiler on Friday when he swept the scorecards and defeated featherweight champion Patricio Freire.

In the Bellator 297 main event at Wintrust Arena, Pettis (23-5 MMA, 5-0 BMMA) defeated Freire (35-5 MMA, 23-5 BMMA) via unanimous decision (49-46, 50-45, 50 -45) to retain the bantamweight title.

The first round was competitive, as Pettis used his strike and Freire found success with a kick caught in an out. In round two, the momentum changed dramatically when Pettis landed a late spinning wheel kick to the head that sent Freire into a retreat. Freire backed up to the fence and dodged a knockout blow until the horn sounded.

For the remainder of the fight, Pettis found success with his kicks and jab, the latter of which sliced ​​and diced Freire’s face. While Freire found some success with his boxing and cage control, that wasn’t enough to sway the judges in his favor.

When the official decision was read, Freire fell to his knees in disbelief as a delighted Pettis interviewed John McCarthy.

Pettis successfully defends the title on his first attempt. He won the bantamweight championship in December 2021, but months later suffered a knee injury that kept him out of action for 14 months.

The win lines up Pettis with a unification bout against interim champion Patchy Mix, who won the Bantamweight Grand Prix with a knockout of Raufeon Stots in April. The two fighters squared off after the fight.

Freire falls short of history in an attempt to become the first fighter to win championships in three weight classes for the same major promotion. He currently holds the promotion’s featherweight title and held the lightweight title from 2019-2021. The loss ends a three-fight winning streak for Pettis.

Updated Bellator 297 results include:

  • Sergio Pettis defeats. Patricio Freire by unanimous decision (49-46, 50-45, 50-45)

  • Corey Anderson beats. Phil Davis via split decision (28-29, 29-28, 28-29)

  • Gokhan Saricam defeats. Daniel James by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)

  • Gadzhi Rabadanov defeated. Pieter Buist by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)

  • Ramazan Kuramagomedov defeats. Jaleel Willis via KO (knee and punches) – Round 1, 1:24

  • Norbert Novenyi Jr. def. Kamil Oniszczuk via KO (punches) – Round 1, 0:46

  • Archie Colgan defeats. Emmanuel Sanchez by unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)

  • Jordan Newman beats. Matthew Perry via submission (Americana) – Round 1, 4:20

  • Cody Law won. Edwin Chavez via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)

For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s Event Center for Bellator 297.

The story originally appeared on MMA Junkie

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