A postponed title fight between reigning Bellator light heavyweight champion Vadim Nemkov and challenger Yoel Romero will be the main event of Bellator 297 on June 16 in Chicago.
In the second most important event of the event, the reigning Bellator featherweight champion and the organization’s top fighter in any weight category, Patricio “Pitbull” Freire, will descend to the bantamweight division and try to take the title from Sergio Pettis.
Title fights were officially announced by representatives of the organization.
Last November, Vadim Nemkov won the Bellator Light Heavyweight Grand Prix with a unanimous decision over Cory Anderson in the final match, while Yoel Romero is on a two win streak in the organization, knocking out Alex Polizzi and Melvin Manhoef.
The fight between Nemkov and Romero was supposed to take place on February 4 at Bellator 290 in Inglewood, but due to lack of time to prepare, the Russian team insisted on postponing the fight.
Sergio Pettis will return to the cage for the first time since he was injured and pulled out of the Bellator Bantamweight Grand Prix last March. The American won the championship belt in May 2021, defeating Juan Archuleta by unanimous decision, and seven months later he successfully defended the title by knocking out Kyoji Horiguchi.
Patricio Freire is on a three win streak with decision wins over AJ McKee, Adam Borich and Kleber Koik Erbst. In 2021, the Brazilian vacated the Bellator lightweight title, which he had taken from Michael Chandler two years earlier.