Douglas Lima knows he has a huge opportunity ahead at Bellator 192
Douglas Lima may be one of the most underappreciated, overlooked champions in MMA. Despite beating some tough, top names in Paul Daley, Andrey Koreshkov, and Lorenz Larkin, he has played second fiddle to challenger Rory MacDonald in media sessions. Maybe it’s a side effect of being a self-proclaimed “nice guy” — but Lima’s “under the radar” status could change after Bellator 192 on Saturday.
At Wednesday’s press scrum following the Bellator 192 open workouts, the champ admitted that his upcoming bout with MacDonald was the biggest of his career.
“Sure, I mean every fight is the biggest, but this one is a little more special” he told the assembled media, with Cageside Press in attendance. “Big name, I’ve been wanting to fight a guy like him for a long time. It’s my shot, I can’t wait.”
Could this be the fight that puts him on the radar at long last? “Yeah, especially for the casual fans. He’s got a big following. He’s a lot more known for sure. There’s going to be a chance to put a stamp on it, that I belong in the top of this division.”
Then there’s the question of who the best welterweight in the world really is. MacDonald lost his title shot against Robbie Lawler in the UFC in an all-time classic. He does, however, hold a win over current UFC welterweight champ Tyron Woodley. Should Lima beat Rory MacDonald, does that give him bragging rights as the best?
“For sure. Of course in this sport, there’s always going to be someone else. But beating him, it’s a no brainer.”
When asked what, if anything, concerned Lima about his opponent, the champ answered “I wouldn’t say concerned, but I’m aware of how good he is.” And beyond that, said Lima, MacDonald excels at “mixing things up. He’s good standing, he’s good on the ground, he’s a good wrestler as well. So it just makes everything pretty good, and that’s the thing that he shines [at]. Him and his camp are good at putting together game plans, and I think they’re good at that. But nothing I haven’t seen before, it’s just another fight.”
As for his own game plan in this bout?
“Just hit him hard, from the first second, hit him as hard as I can.”
Catch the full press scrum in the video above.
Bellator 192 takes place Saturday, January 20 at The Forum in Los Angeles, CA. Chael Sonnen faces Rampage Jackson in the main event following the welterweight title fight between Lima and MacDonald.