Bellator

The Reaper Vows Revenge on Rafal

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by Matt Lo Cascio

When Midwest Training Center’s Rafal Skibinski and Uflacker BJJ’s Jason “The Reaper” Graves rematch at Bellator 75 in Hammond on October 5, expect fireworks — and a big finish.

“I have a lot of respect for Jason. But I’m planning on retiring him from MMA because of his big mouth,” Skibinski said.

Both fighters have spent some time this week trying to set the story straight on the controversial ending of their XFO 43 fight. It should come as no surprise that both have different versions of what down that night, though Skibinski did exit as the victor when the fight was stopped by the doctor in the first round.

Graves took down Skibinski, achieved full mount and was working ground and pound shortly before the fight was called to a halt.

“I was winning that fight and my cut was to the bone and close to the tear duct, which is why the doc stopped it,” Graves told Chicago’s MMA.

“I was robbed by the ref when he warned Rafal (to fight back) and another 50 unanswered hits landed from mount. The ref stepped into my peripheral vision and appeared to be charging toward me after Rafal mumbled a bloody plea. I let up and he took advantage as I showed mercy. No more mercy.”

XFO 43: Jason Graves vs. Rafal SkibinskiSkibinski isn’t buying that account.

“Oh okay. Last time I just got cut and Jason got the take down and then full mount and started throwing punches to my guard instead of my head,” Skibinski said.

“He just got lucky and he still wasn’t able to finish the fight because of his poor technique. This time will be a different story. I can’t tell you my game plan, but I promise I won’t make the same mistake he did.”

Graves admits that he shouldn’t have let up. “My fault for not submitting him or knocking him out.”

While Graves plans on a different outcome than their first bout, Skibinski detailed why he will once again be the winner.

“I’m stronger, bigger and faster than (Graves) and I’m more technical and not wild like him,” Skibinski said.

You can watch Skibinski vs. Graves II on Spike.com, or you can see it in person at The Venue at Horseshoe Casino in Hammond on Friday, October 5. Visit Bellator.com for ticket information.

See photos from their XFO 43 battle on the Chicago’s MMA Facebook page.

About Matt Lo Cascio

Matt Lo Cascio is a former TV producer who turned to new media in 2005, and he is the co-founder and editor of Chicago's MMA. He is also the play-by-play announcer for the XFO. His work has been published by ESPN.com, DraftKings, The Comeback, FanSided and more.

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1 Comment

  1. Jason Graves

    Sep 28, 2012 at 6:38 pm

    Thanks to Matt Lo Cascio for a great article! Thanks to Lui from SNIPER FIGHT WEAR! http://sniperfw.com Check out their selection! Some high quality fight wear! Check out my Walkout Shirt for Bellator 75 for only 24.99! Hit me up on http://Facebook.com/jasonj.graves for more information on Bellator 75 and my thoughts on this epic rematch!

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