James Barnes

James “Mooka” Barnes Has an Opportunity to Avenge an Old Loss at Bellator 228

James “Mooka” Barnes (11-4) faces David Duran (8-5) at Bellator 228 this weekend and while it may not be one of the featured bouts on the card, it is of special interest to Barnes who has a history with Duran. Barnes is a black belt in Brazilian Jiu-jitsu and has eight wins by submission. However, everyone had to start somewhere and in his early days coming into MMA as an amateur, Barnes took his first loss by way of submission.  His opponent was Duran.

Reading it, 2012 does not seem that long ago but seven years is a good chunk of time to evolve as a martial artist. While both Barnes and Duran were amateurs back then, an event at what is shown as “Get Down Fights 2” according to Barnes’ record on Sherdog had him suffer his first and last loss by submission. Both made the decision to continue to pursue a career in mixed martial arts. Comparing their current records, Barnes’ seems to have been the busier fighter since their amateur days.

When asked on The Coast-2-Coast Combat Hour if he was looking forward to avenging a loss from his amateur days, Barnes said with excitement, “Oh yeah!” Barnes said he was tapped by guillotine when he Duran first fought. The eight submission wins he has gotten since then, four of them have been by choke specifically.

While Barnes said he would not specifically look to give back what he got from Duran in 2012, he admits it would be a nice way to win. “I’m not so much going for a submission, or directing myself towards a submission,” Barnes said about facing Duran now, but added, “My plan is to run him over.”

Bellator 228 will stream live exclusively on DAZN at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT, while preliminary action will stream on Bellator.com, DAZN and globally on the Bellator Mobile App beginning at 7:30 p.m. ET/4:30 p.m. PT.

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Edward Carbajal
Edward holds a black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and Bachelor's degree in Communications. Along with over 30 years of martial arts experience, he co-hosts The Coast-2-Coast Combat Hour podcast, and also writes for Spectation Sports. You can follow him on Twitter @Carbazel