Bellator 263: Georgi Karakhanyan on Trash Talk, Title Shot, And What’s Next

Los Angeles, CA — Bellator 263’s Georgi Karakhanyan believes his submission game is on another level.

He might be known as “Insane” to MMA fans, but Karakhanyan isn’t wrong about his submission prowess. His arm-triangle choke victory over Kiefer Crosbie on Saturday was the 16th sub of the 36-year old’s career.

There was a bit of trash talk ahead of the fight, on the part of SBG Ireland’s Crosbie. It apparently backfired. “He was saying that my experience ain’t sh*t, and he was saying that he’s a big daddy,” Karakhanyan said with a laugh following the event, which went down at The Forum in L.A. “I was expecting some of this stuff, coming from SBG guys. But after the fight, it’s all respect.”

“I appreciate him trying to trash talk me, which didn’t phase me,” Karakhanyan added. He even offered to go over to SBG Ireland and train with the team there. And he feels the trash talk might just be a confidence booster. “It’s like a little psychology. They’re trying to build themselves up maybe. Or maybe he’s just around Conor McGregor in the gym, so it’s normal.”

“At the end of the day, this is entertainment,” Karakhanyan continued. “Maybe if I just started, I’d be like him. But I’ve been doing this so long, it just doesn’t make sense.”

There is a line when it comes to trash talk, Georgi Karakhanyan added. Crosbie didn’t cross it. But bringing up family is a non-starter with him. “I was born in Russia. We don’t touch the family. Especially with the way I was growing up. Family, mother, kids, son, we just don’t trash talk family. Because it can elevate to different things.”

With two straight wins in Bellator’s lightweight division, and 3-1 in his past four fights, the veteran is now looking to head overseas for his next bout. “I’m trying to get on that Russia card, just to show Bellator how many fans I got there. I’m trying to get on the London card. I know they have Ireland, if Patricky [Pitbull] and Peter Queally don’t fight, I would like a shot at Peter Quelly, fight him,” said Karakhanyan. Having previously been booked against Adam Piccolotti, that’s another fight he’s interested in. “This switch to 155 is not just for me to be a fighter. I’m trying to get the title.”

Being at 155lbs “feels awesome,” Karakhanyan told Cageside Press on Saturday. “I’m following a strict carnivore diet, I’ve been a carnivore for nine months, I feel awesome. The weight cut is easy. It’s not like 45, 45 man, I was dying. So I feel awesome, I feel great.”

Having lost numerous fights at the L.A. Forum, he also recognized that at Bellator 263, “this one was big.”

For good reason. “Because I fought here, Emmanuel Sanchez, I lost. I fought here, Henry Corrales, I lost. I fought here, A.J. McKee, I lost in eight seconds. It was devastating,” Karakhanyan admitted. “Before I would walk through this hallway, I would be like ‘oh man,’ when I would look at the names. This time, when I was walking around, I was seeing some crazy sh*t, some crazy thoughts coming into my head.” Those crazy thoughts resulted in him having a “don’t give a f*ck” attitude, with a do-or-die mentality.

“As a fighter, our opponents don’t beat us. We beat ourselves. And I had to stay really strong in there.”

Watch the full Bellator 263 post-fight press scrum with Georgi Karakhanyan above.