Bellator 264’s Raufeon Stots: “I’m the Best Bantamweight in the World”

Raufeon Stots entered Bellator 264 a sizeable underdog, and came out of it the man of the hour.

Stots (17-1), a Roufusport fighter, was up against Magomed Magomedov on Friday’s card. While he couldn’t put the Russian away, he came close en route to a one-sided unanimous decision win.

“I was so close to finishing him in the third, I kinda let it slip,” Stots told media outlets including Cageside Press following the fight. “But I’m feeling great about everything I’ve been working, feeling really sharp, I feel like I fight good, and I’m very dangerous.”

Stots went into the fight with Magomedov a 3 to 1 underdog. In pulling off the upset, he not only surprised many, but found himself awash in talk of a title shot following the performance. After all, Magomedov had been considered, unofficially, as next in line for a shot at 135lb gold.

“I definitely feel like this is the number one contender’s spot. I feel like I have the claim now to say I’m the best in the world,” said Stots, noting Magomedov’s win over former UFC bantamweight champ Petr Yan. “This guy beat Peter Yan, who I still regard as the champion of the UFC. He went one and one with this guy, and I kind of dismantled Magomed, so I feel like the best in the world. No matter the promotion, no matter where, I’m the best bantamweight in the world.”

There’s only one problem: Stots’ friend and training partner, Sergio Pettis, holds the belt in Bellator MMA’s bantamweight division. With that in mind, Stots is hoping a grand prix could postpone a fight that appears inevitable at this point.

“I’m really hoping for a bantamweight tournament. It’s up to Bellator, what Bellator wants to do, but I feel like we have a lot of firepower in the bantamweight division,” Stots stated. “So I would love a tournament. On the plus side of that, I get to train with Sergio a little longer.”

The pair have worked together for a long time, and compliment each other, Stots said. “I’ve learned so much from Sergio, and Sergio would say the same, he’s learned so much [from me]. So I don’t wanna stop learning from Sergio to have to fight him, because I want to be the best martial artist I can. I understand if that’s what they want to do, but I would love a bantamweight tournament.”

If the pair do face off? “It’s like out of sight, out of mind. Until it happens— we’re gonna be boys no matter what, but we haven’t even talked about it. Me and my coaches haven’t even talked about it, because we were focused on this match-up. I would love to train at Roufusport, I’m sure Sergio would love to train at Roufusport, so maybe we just spar every other [day]? I dunno. I dunno what we’re gonna do, but we’ll figure it out, probably.”

Watch the full Bellator 264 post-fight pres conference appearance by Raufeon Stots above.