Home MMA Bellator Brett Cooper Replaces Doug Marshall for Bellator 98 Title Shot

Brett Cooper Replaces Doug Marshall for Bellator 98 Title Shot

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Doug Marshall’s broken hand has caused him to drop out of a planned middleweight title shot at Bellator 98. The show must go on though, and Brett Cooper has stepped in to face the current champ Alexander Shlemenko at the September event.

“My goal has always been the same: get the belt,” Cooper wrote in an official statement. “I’m always making improvements, and this is an incredible opportunity I’m not going to pass up.”

Brett Cooper lost his most recent fight to Doug Marshall in the Bellator Season 8 middleweight tournament finals. Prior to that, Cooper had managed to rack up six straight wins, following a defeat at the hands of none other than Alexander Shlemenko in 2011.

“When we fought in 2011, it was an absolute war, and I’ve grown into a much different fighter over the last few years,” Cooper stated. “I’m 26 years old, and this is my time to take the next step.”

To take the title shot, Cooper will drop out of his scheduled fight against Andreas Spang in the Season 9 tournament. Justin Torrey will now take his spot.

Shlemenko meanwhile has been on a hell of a run, picking up ten straight victories in the past two years. He last won the middleweight title, defeating Maiquel Falcão via KO at Bellator 88.

“When we fought in 2011, it was an absolute war, and I’ve grown into a much different fighter over the last few years,” Cooper stated. “I’m 26 years old, and this is my time to take the next step.”

Brett Cooper is currently 19-8 overall, with a 6-3 record in Bellator.

Champion Alexander Shlemenko is currently 47-7 overall, and 8-1 in Bellator.

The fight will be featured as the main event of Bellator 98. The event will take place on September 7 at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut. It will air live on Spike TV, following prelims on Spike.com.

Here is the current confirmed card:

  • Alexander Shlemenko vs. Brett Cooper
  • Joe Warren vs. Nick Kirk
  • Andreas Spang vs. Justin Torrey
  • Perry Filkins vs. Jeremy Kimball
  • Mikkel Parlo vs. Brian Rogers
  • Jason Butcher vs. Giva Santana
  • Derek Anderson vs. Patricky Freire
  • Mike Mucitelli vs. Jeff Nader
  • Brennan Ward vs. Dave Vitkay
  • Andrew Calandrelli vs. Ryan Quinn
  • Matt Bessette vs. Nick Piedmont
  • Glenn Allaire vs. Rico DiSciullo
  • Josh Diekmann vs. Parker Porter