Bellator 265 takes place at the Sanford Pentagon this Friday night (August 20) and the main event is a battle between two fighters that have a combined 86 fights.

Cheick Kongo and Sergei Kharitonov will meet for the first time in their long-standing MMA careers. Both have fought all over the world and now have an opportunity to jump up the heavyweight standings in Bellator and potentially receive a heavyweight championship bout in the near future.

Kongo is the current #3 ranked heavyweight in Bellator. He holds a professional record of 30 wins, 11 losses, 2 draws, and 1 no contest. After spending his first four years fighting in the Netherlands, Kongo came to the United States to fight in the UFC starting at UFC 61 in July 2006. Throughout his UFC career, Kongo went 11-6-1 and had notable wins over Mirko Cro Cop and Matt Mitrione. He also fought guys like Frank Mir, Cain Velasquez, and Roy Nelson.

After his stint with the UFC, Kongo joined Bellator in 2013. Kongo is 12-3-1 since joining the promotion and is entering the Bellator 265 main event off a split decision loss to Timothy Johnson at Bellator Paris last October.

KSOO-AM / ESPN Sioux Falls logo
Get our free mobile app

Kharitonov (32-8-2) has been around MMA since the early 2000s taking a different path to the Bellator 265 main event. Kharitonov's first seven fights took place in Russia before joining PRIDE Fighting Championships in 2003. His opponents during his PRIDE tenure are top-level athletes that are well known today. PRIDE opponents included the likes of Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, Fabricio Werdum, and Alistair Overeem.

After PRIDE, Kharitonov went on to fight guys like former UFC Heavyweight Champions Andrei Arlovski and Josh Barnett in Strikeforce. Kharitonov joined Bellator in 2016 and fought twice before leaving to fight in China and Russia. He returned to Bellator in October 2018 and is 3-2-1 within the Bellator promotion.

It's a first-time meeting between two guys that have a combined 40 years of MMA experience, 86 professional fights, and two guys that are looking to make a run to the Bellator Heavyweight Championship. It's a special main event that is taking place in Sioux Falls.

And you won't want to miss it.

Tickets for Bellator 265 are still available through Ticketmaster or the Sanford Pentagon Box Office.

Ten Most Disappointing Minnesota Sports Seasons

More From KSOO-AM / ESPN Sioux Falls