– Bellator returns to Pechanga Resort Casino in Temecula, Calif. for Bellator 201
on Friday, June 29. The card will be headlined by the San Diego-based Ilima-Lei Macfarlane
(7-0), who defends her undefeated record and newly won flyweight crown against Columbia's Alejandra "Azul" Lara
In addition to the women's flyweight championship being up for grabs on June 29, Valerie Létourneau
(9-6) will look to improve to 2-0 inside the Bellator cage, when she meets the always-tough Bruna Ellen
(4-1) at 125-pounds. Additional bouts, including the co-main event for Bellator 201: Macfarlane vs. Lara
, will be announced in the coming days.
Tickets for the event go on sale this Friday, April 6 and start at $39. Tickets will be available at the Pechanga box office and Pechanga.com. Doors for the event open at 3:30 p.m. PT, while the preliminary card will kick-off at 4:30 p.m. PST. The event will be broadcast live and free on Paramount Network at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT, while preliminary action will stream on Bellator.com and globally on the newly updated Bellator Mobile App.
Ilima-Lei Macfarlane has been proving naysayers wrong since her viral MMA debut in 2015, defeating every opponent placed in front of her en route to becoming the inaugural Bellator women's flyweight champion this past November by defeating Emily Ducote
. Born in Honolulu, "The Ilimanator" was a high school wrestler at Punahou School, where she was also a classmate of pro golfer Michelle Wie. Primarily focusing on her academics, Macfarlane went on to attend San Diego State University, where she studied cultural anthropology and went on to earn her master's degree in liberal arts and sciences. Following that, the 27-year-old dove headfirst into MMA, splitting time between Team Hurricane Awesome and 10th
Planet Jiu-Jitsu, where she remains to this day. Undefeated as a pro, Macfarlane now looks to keep her undefeated record intact and the title around her waist.
Hailing from Medellin, Colombia, Alejandra Lara made a statement in Bellator's flyweight division when she finished Lena Ovchynnikova
via rear-naked choke at Bellator 190
. The 23-year-old knockout artist has earned seven victories in eight outings since making her professional debut in 2011 and has shown tenacity in her fights thus far, showcasing a pair of first round knockouts and multiple submissions. On the heels of her impressive promotional debut, Lara earned a shot at the championship on June 29.
The Canadian-born Létourneau, a former UFC strawweight title challenger, carries an impressive track record of thrilling fights, highlighted by a world title contest against former champion Joanna Jędrzejczyk. Since signing with Bellator, "Trouble" has moved up to her more natural weight class, impressively defeating Kate Jackson
in her promotional debut. At Bellator 201,
the American Top Team-product will look to improve upon her nine victories as a professional, a tally that includes five finishes, with four coming by way of knockout.
At only 21-years-old, Ellen has already made three appearances for Bellator, competing against the likes of Veta Arteaga and Jessica Middleton. The Campinas, Brazil native and Team Nogueira-product has won four out of five fights to begin her professional career and will now look to continue her upward trajectory when she meets the former title challenger in a battle of top contenders. Updated Bellator 201: Macfarlane vs. Lara Fight Card:Women's Flyweight Title Main Event:
Ilima-Lei Macfarlane (7-0) vs. Alejandra Lara (7-1)Women's Flyweight Feature Bout:
Valerie Létourneau (9-6) vs. Bruna Ellen (4-1)
*Card subject to change
Please visit Bellator.com for additional information. About Bellator:
Bellator is a leading mixed martial arts and kickboxing organization featuring many of the best fighters in the world. Under the direction of veteran fight promoter Scott Coker, Bellator is available to nearly 1 billion people worldwide in over 160 countries. In the United States, Bellator can be seen on Paramount Network (formerly Spike), the combat sports television leader. Bellator is comprised of an executive team that includes top industry professionals in television production, live event orchestration, fighter development/relations, venue procurement, sponsorship creation/development, international licensing, marketing, advertising, publicity and commission relations. Bellator is based in Hollywood, Calif. and owned by entertainment giant Viacom, home to the world's premier entertainment brands that connect with audiences through compelling content across television, motion picture, online and mobile platforms. About Paramount Network:
Paramount Network is a premium entertainment destination that pushes the limits of story-telling with bold original scripted and non-scripted series. Inspired by over a century of cinema, Paramount Network is where today's brightest stars bring the experience of the big screen to every screen with stories that are immersive, inclusive, and deeply personal. About Pechanga Resort Casino:
Pechanga Resort & Casino offers one of the largest and most expansive resort/casino experiences anywhere in the United States. Voted the No. 1 casino in America by USA TODAY and rated a Four Diamond property by AAA since 2002, Pechanga Resort Casino provides an unparalleled getaway, whether for the day or for an extended luxury stay. Offering more than 4,500 of the hottest slots, table games, world-class entertainment, 1,090 hotel rooms, dining, spa and championship golf at Journey at Pechanga, Pechanga Resort Casino features a destination that meets and exceeds the needs of its guests and the community. Pechanga Resort Casino is owned and operated by the Pechanga Band of Luiseño Indians. For more information, call toll free 1-888-PECHANGA or visit www.Pechanga.com
. Follow Pechanga Resort & Casino on Facebook
and on Twitter @PechangaCasino
. Pechanga Resort & Casino is open 24-hours. Guests must be 21 and older to enter the casino.