Bellator champ Gegard Mousasi's plan: Defend his belt, then go hunting for another
LONDON – Gegard Mousasi never has been one to get overly excited ahead of his fights. And, after a super light open workout that lasted barely a minute Wednesday, the laid-back Dutchman chatted with MMA Junkie and admitted he just wants to get things over with.
“I feel comfortable, weight is good,” he said. “(I’m) just killing time waiting for the fight. I want to get done with it and go home.”
But before “The Dreamcatcher” (45-6-2 MMA, 3-0 BMMA) can board a plane back to the Netherlands, he has to deal with the challenge of grappling ace and undefeated title challenger Rafael Lovato Jr. (9-0 MMA, 5-0 BMMA), who comes into the contest having made a seamless transition from the Brazilian jiu-jitsu mats to the Bellator cage. Mousasi said he has watched Lovato’s progression and has been suitably impressed.
“He’s good,” Mousasi admitted. “He’s not been tested yet, so there are a lot of questions that have to be answered. His stand-up is decent; wrestling, not so much. But his ground is really good, so obviously if we play his game he has a better chance of winning.
“He’s 9-0, and the last two opponents … (Chris) Honeycutt was good and the other guy, big-eared guy (John Salter), he was undefeated in Bellator, and he beat him, so he’s up there.”
Mousasi is hoping to continue his excellent form on British soil as he looks to defend the belt in the arena where he captured the title back at Bellator 200. And to do that, he said, he will need to take the initiative.
“(You will see) me being more aggressive going forward, setting him up with punches, making him do mistakes, then capitalizing on that,” Mousasi said.
And if he successfully defends his title, Mousasi said he’d love to switch his attention to one of the adjacent weight classes in Bellator. And, if given the choice between a move up to light heavyweight or a drop to welterweight to fight for a second championship belt, Mousasi said he’d take the latter, on one condition.
“Welterweight, only if Douglas Lima wins (the grand prix final),” Mousasi said. “That’s going to be more appealing if he wins because a rematch of me vs. Rory (MacDonald) is not that interesting now.
“Like I’ve always said, they should pay me more. If they don’t pay more, fine, I have a contract. I’m worth more against Ryan Bader, and I’m worth more if I fight Douglas Lima for the belt. That’s the way I feel. My value goes up because the opponent is better, and more people would like to see that. I guess if they don’t want to pay, I’m fine. I’ll fight my own middleweight fights.”
1 month ago