Patricky Freire vows to reclaim Bellator lightweight gold following lopsided loss to Usman Nurmagomedov: “It won’t happen again”

By Fernando Quiles - November 20, 2022

Patricky “Pitbull” Freire heard two words he was dreading to hear at the end of his Bellator Lightweight Championship fight against Usman Nurmagomedov. Those words were, “And new.”

Patricky Freire

Freire put the 155-pound gold on the line against Nurmagomedov in the co-main event of Bellator 288 on November 18. This one was one-sided as Nurmagomedov never allowed Freire to get going. It was a clean sweep for Nurmagomedov, who earned score totals of 50–45, 50–44, and 50–44.

Patricky Freire Speaks Out

Taking to his Twitter account, “Pitbull” reflected on the loss and admitted that he didn’t feel like himself on fight night.

“Congratulations Usman, you have great talent. I was too cautious and wasn’t myself in the cage last night. Never got into gear. It won’t happen again. Next year starts the Lightweight Grand Prix and I will claim the title and the prize. Write that down.”

Patricky Freire won the Bellator Lightweight Championship back in November 2021. He stopped Peter Queally in the second round to lay claim to the gold. The bout against Nurmagomedov was the first time he was defending the title.

As for Nurmagomedov, his pro MMA record improves to a perfect 16-0. He has gone 5-0 under the Bellator banner. This was also just the third fight in Nurmagomedov’s career that has gone the distance.

Ahead of the fight, Nurmagomedov dedicated the title matchup to his fallen uncle, Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov, who passed away in 2020. Here’s what he told MMAFighting.

“For me [this fight], it’s all the hopes and dreams my uncle has put into me,” Usman told MMA Fighting. “I just don’t want to let him down. I want to take this belt, inshallah, and it put in our school of Abdulmanap.”


Bellator Patricky Pitbull