Douglas Lima has seen a Bellator welterweight champion struggle against Gegard Mousasi before.
Back in 2018, then-170lb champ Rory MacDonald moved up in weight to challenge Mousasi for the middleweight title. Coincidentally, Lima would later win the welterweight belt by defeating MacDonald. And now it’s the Brazilian going up against Mousasi, with the vacant 185lb title on the line.
“That didn’t go too good for [Rory MacDonald], of course. But I think I’m a different fighter. A little bit bigger than him as well,” observed Lima on Tuesday, speaking at the Bellator 250 media day. “And I don’t worry, [Rory] just wasn’t himself that night. So I can’t really count on that fight. Of course Mousasi looked amazing. He did what he had to do. He hurt him early, with those jabs and I think he just felt the power of him. But I feel pretty good.”
It’s an interesting study nonetheless. But given Lima and MacDonald’s different styles, it’s “definitely going to be a different story with me,” said Lima. “I’m feeling good right now and at this middleweight. We’ll do this weight cut tonight and see how I’m feeling fight time, but everything went good. Training camp has been amazing. I feel really strong, feel ready to go, and feel ready to get this belt.”
The belt sits vacant, of course, after Mousasi dropped it to Rafael Lovato Jr. last year. Lovato was then diagnosed with a serious brain condition, forcing him to vacate the title. Creating the opportunity for Lima to become the next double champ in MMA. Joining the likes of McGregor, Nunes, Cormier, Cejudo, Bader, and Pitbull in the record books.
Some fighters moving up have struggled with the return to their original division, mind you. But Lima has no plans on leaving welterweight behind.
“No, I’m not leaving the welterweight division. That’s my weight class. I think there’s a lot more fights for me to do there,” he assured media members Tuesday. “But let’s see how I feel Thursday. Right now everything feels great. But I’m still the same weight that I am when I find at 170. I usually walk around at 200 pounds. For middleweight, cut 15 pounds. Welterweight, suffer a little more, but I can make the weight no problem.”
Watch the full Bellator 250 virtual media day press scrum with Douglas Lima above.