Bellator heavyweight Matt Mitrione suffered a brutal second-round knockout loss to Sergei Kharitonov in the main event of Saturday night’s Bellator 225 card. But before the knockout happened, Mitrione was having trouble with his mouthpiece as it fell out of his mouth multiple times.
The big blow came when Mitrione’s mouthpiece was knocked out by a Kharitonov punch early in the second round. He was clearly mentally shook by it and let his guard down, which allowed Kharitonov to land a vicious uppercut and then a knee which knocked Mitrione down. Kharitonov then finished Mitrione off with ground and pound before referee Dan Miragliotta stopped the fight.
Bellator color commentator “Big” John McCarthy was critical of Mitrione having an ill-fitted mouthpiece, wondering how a professional mixed martial artist could have a mouthpiece that was knocked out of his mouth so easily. According to McCarthy, the ill-fitted mouthpiece took Mitrione’s mental attention away from the fight itself.
Mitrione has now taken to social media and explained why the mouthpiece fell out of his mouth so easily. Here’s what “Meathead” said.
Me losing was not because of my mouthpiece, it was because of my response to the situation. I always use the same one & lost it Thursday before fight week. Had an impression done at a West Lafayette dentist. It was shipped to hotel. First time I ever wore it was tonight.
— Matt Mitrione (@mattmitrione) August 25, 2019
“Me losing was not because of my mouthpiece, it was because of my response to the situation. I always use the same one & lost it Thursday before fight week. Had an impression done at a West Lafayette dentist. It was shipped to hotel. First time I ever wore it was tonight.”
With the loss, Mitrione drops to a 4-2, 1 NC record overall in Bellator. After opening up his Bellator MMA career with four straight wins, including a KO over Fedor Emelianenko, Mitrione is now winless in his last three fights.
As for Kharitonov, he is now 3-1, 1 NC over the course of two stints in Bellator. The veteran heavyweight is 6-0, 2 NC over his last eight fights and could very well be next in line to fight winner of Ryan Bader vs. Cheick Kongo for the heavyweight title next year.
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