Ninjas in the Ring

Flinty fighters of both sexes will be beating on one another at the Seminole Hard Rock Casino & Hotel for the Bellator 46 Fighting Championships. Bellator sponsors sparring in mixed martial arts, and the fighters are trained in the likes of judo and jujitsu. Their methods may be more refined, but the pummeling is no less brutal than in boxing — especially since they have the use of their legs.

They’re squaring off for the start of the Summer Series Featherweight Tournament, broadcast live from the Hard Rock by MTV2. A couple of Brazilian fighters renowned for their knockout specialties, a “submission specialist” from Britain, an Argentine with a 19-1 record, and a host of other men whom you wouldn’t want to take on in a bar-fight are jumping in the ring. Florida native Josh Samman is up against a grizzled vet, Mike “El Gringo Diablo” Bernhard. Also competing are the no-less-terrifying women, with Jessica “Jag” Aguilar and Carla Esparza opening barrels of whoop-ass.

The Bellator 46 Fighting Championships is at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood (1 Seminole Way, Hollywood). Tickets cost $25. Call 312-245-9805, or visit
Sat., June 25, 7:30 p.m., 2011

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Penn Bullock