Amosov, back from war in Ukraine, routs Storley

Yaroslav Amosov has not competed in the Bellator MMA cage since the summer of 2021. He was busy with a more important fight.

Amosov, the Ukrainian welterweight champion who retired from MMA over a year ago to help defend his country from a Russian invasion, returned on Saturday to successfully defend his title with a dominant unanimous decision victory over interim champion Logan Storley in the main event. Bellator 291 in Dublin, Ireland.

With a score of 27-0, Amosov is the most undefeated winning fighter active in MMA. His unblemished record in sports history is surpassed only by retired UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov with a 29-0 mark.

In February 2022, with his hometown of Irpin under siege, Amosov evacuated his family to safety and later returned to join the fight against Russian forces along with several prominent Ukrainian boxers, including former heavyweight champions Vladimir and Vitali Klitschko, current heavyweight champion Oleksandr Usyk, and former lightweight champion Vasily Lomachenko.

Last April, Amosov posted a video on Instagram of himself retrieving his Bellator title belt from the rubble of his mother’s home in Irpin.

“Ukrainian people, I love you. I love you, my people,” Amosov said afterward in the cage to loud applause from 3Arena fans, some of whom were waving Ukrainian flags.

With a broken voice, Amosov thanked the Ukrainian army and everyone “who helped my country.” [do] don’t forget what’s going on.”

Amosov did not look like a fighter after a 20-month break. From the very beginning, he walked along Storley and inflicted damage to the head, torso and legs, making combinations of four, five and six punches and kicks. The champion’s defense was also at its best as he saved a dozen takedown attempts from Storley, a four-time Division I collegiate All-American wrestler.

Storley (14-2) weathered it all for five rounds, his face was bloodied in the first five minutes and his lead leg was also badly hurt early on. But he simply didn’t have the answers against Amosov, who earned 50-45 scorecards from all three judges.

Both of Storley’s losses came to Amosov. He earned that second shot at the title by earning the interim belt last May with a split decision win over Michael “Venom” Page.


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