Bellator 224 pre-event facts: Can Julia Budd's title run be stopped?

The lone Bellator event on July takes place Friday when WinStar World Casino and Resort in Thackerville, Okla., hosts Bellator 224. The card airs on Paramount following prelims on MMA Junkie.

In the main event, Bellator women’s featherweight champion Julia Budd (12-2 MMA, 6-0 BMMA) looks to make her fourth title defense when she meets the unbeaten challenger Olga Rubin (6-0 MMA, 4-0 BMMA).

Budd’s title bout is the cornerstone of the latest Bellator fight card, but the event has even more to offer. Check below for 28 pre-event facts about Bellator 224.

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Main event

Budd’s only career losses came against current UFC women’s bantamweight champion Amanda Nunes and ex-titleholder Ronda Rousey.

Budd competes in her seventh Bellator women’s featherweight bout, tied with Arlene Blencowe for the most appearances in divisional history.

Budd enters the event on a 10-fight winning streak. She hasn’t suffered a defeat since November 2011.

Budd’s two consecutive Bellator title defenses are tied with Rory MacDonald for second most among current champions behind Ilima-Lei Macfarlane (three).

Budd’s six-fight Bellator winning streak in women’s featherweight competition is the longest active streak in the division.

Budd’s six-fight Bellator winning streak is the second longest active streak among female fighters in the promotion behind Macfarlane (nine).

Budd’s six victories in Bellator women’s featherweight competition are most in divisional history.

Budd’s two stoppage victories in Bellator women’s featherweight competition are tied for most in divisional history.

Olga Rubin

Rubin competes in her fifth Bellator women’s featherweight bout, the third most appearances in divisional history behind Budd (seven) and Blencowe (seven).

Rubin’s four-fight Bellator winning streak in women’s featherweight competition is the second longest active streak in the division behind Budd (six).

Rubin’s two stoppage victories in Bellator women’s featherweight competition are tied for most in divisional history.

Co-main event

Rafael Carvalho (15-3 MMA, 6-2 BMMA) competes in his ninth Bellator middleweight bout, the second most appearances in divisional history behind Alexander Shlemenko (17).

Carvalho enters the event on the first losing skid os his career. He hasn’t earned a victory since December 2017.

Carvalho’s six victories in Bellator middleweight competition are tied for second most in divisional history behind Shlemenko (12).

Carvalho earned three consecutive Bellator middleweight title defenses when he was champion, tied with Alexander Shlemenko for most in history.

Carvalho’s 44-second knockout of Alessio Sakara at Bellator 190 is tied for the second fastest title-fight stoppage in Bellator history. Only Brandon Halsey’s 35-second win at Bellator 126 was faster.

Carvalho has earned 12 of his 15 career victories by stoppage. He’s finished all of those wins by knockout.

Chidi Njokuani (18-6 MMA, 5-2 BMMA) is 1-1 since he moved up to the Bellator middleweight division in December 2017.

Njokuani has earned 10 of his 11 career stoppage victories by knockout.

Remaining main card

Juliana Velasquez’s (8-0 MMA, 3-0 BMMA) three-fight Bellator winning streak in flyweight competition is the second longest active streak in the division behind Macfarlane (nine).

Kiichi Kunimoto (20-7 MMA, 0-0 UFC) returns stateside after going 2-0 in Rizin after his final UFC fight in June 2017.

For more on Bellator 224, check out the MMA Schedule.

Source: USA Today – MMA Junkie

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