Just one fight into his Bellator career, Nemkov was handed an acid test of his championship credentials against former 205-pound champ Liam McGeary at Bellator 194, and the Stary Oskol native rose to the challenge to score a headline-making finish.
Nemkov showed more evidence of his solid striking skills, as well as a smart fight IQ, as he spotted an opening in McGeary’s defenses and exploited it to the fullest.
Nemkov identified McGeary’s slender legs as key targets in the fight as he unleashed a succession of powerful, chopping kicks to the Brit’s lower legs throughout a punishing encounter. It not only gave Nemkov the striking edge, it also helped nullify the former champion’s grappling skills, with McGeary unable to shoot for takedowns with the same power and explosiveness.
With McGeary on increasingly more wobbly legs as the fight progressed, it made him a sitting duck for Nemkov’s striking and, smartly, the Russian didn’t deviate from his target as he continually punished McGeary’s legs before eventually finishing him with leg kicks late in the third round.
It was clinical, it was intelligent and it showed that, after only two fights inside the Bellator cage, was ready to mix it with the best 205ers in the promotion.