On 12 May 2023, a pair of explosive duels are added to the Bellator Paris card, one of which involves a former champion advancing to a level.
Douglas Lima (32-11), the former legendary welterweight champion who made the cut, will make the leap to 185 pounds with Costello Van Stines (14-2) in the bout at Accor in Paris, France Arena held.
Advocacy officials made the announcement in a press release issued Thursday. Also announced is a light heavyweight bout between Simone Billon (9-2) and Jose Augusto (7-4, 1NC).
For Lima, the move is a chance to end a harrowing four-game run that has put his career in doubt. The Brazilian has been the face of promotion for several years, winning seasons 5 and 8 of the welterweight championship and capturing his first welterweight title in 2014. Although he lost to Andrei Koreshkov in his next bout, Lima stormed back to the top of the company, beating Koreshkov in a rematch in 2016. After defending his belt once, he lost to Rory MacDonald, then won the Bellator Welterweight Grand Prix, beating MacDonald in a rematch of the 2019 championship final.
However, Lima has not won since. A switch to middleweight in October 2020 in an attempt to win a second title backfired. Lima then returned to welterweight, losing for the third time to Yaroslav Amosov. Subsequent losses to “Venom” Michael Page and Jason Jackson.
Van Steenis has won two in a row and returned to action after a two-year absence last October. In that outing, he ended up submitting Kamil Oniszczuk.
Jose Augusto and Simon Biyong are two fighters with very different trajectories. Biyong won two straight, while Augusto lost two, despite facing Alex Polizzi and the late Anthony “Rumble” Johnson.
This year’s Bellator Paris card for 12 May 2023 currently has the following games:
- Gegard Mousasi vs. Fabian Edwards
- Mansour Barnaoui vs. Sidney Outlaw – Bellator Lightweight Grand Prix Quarterfinals
- Douglas Lima vs. Costello Van Stinis
- Thibault Gouti vs. Kane Moussa
- Saul Rogers vs. David Gallen
- Jose Augusto vs. Simon Billon