Bellator 283: Dalton Rosta Looking to Test Himself, Wants John Salter Next

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Bellator middleweight Dalton Rosta put on his best performance yet at Bellator 283 on Friday, making a statement in his TKO victory against Romero Cotton.

The fight had been a long time coming, booked anywhere between two to four times, depending on who you asked. In the end, it was American Top Team’s Rosta (7-0) getting the final word in the rivalry — and he’s now turning his attention to the fight he was originally anticipating.

“I want John Salter next. I was actually supposed to get John Salter this fight, but he got injured or something,” Rosta said following his win in Tacoma, WA on Friday, speaking to media outlets including Cageside Press. “I would never accuse him of him of pulling out of fights because he’s scared like Romero, he’s a veteran and a very good fighter, so if he was injured, he was injured. So hopefully John Salter, if he’s healthy, I respect him, he’s a great fighter, I would love to test myself against him to see where I am. Get the win there and keep moving up. But I would really love to step across the cage from him.”

Salter is ranked #4 in the middleweight division at the moment, while Dalton Rosta himself sits at #8. Given the win over #7-ranked Cotton, however, coupled with #6-ranked Lorenz Larkin returning to welterweight, Rosta is likely to find himself moving up a few spots this week.

If there were any surprises to come out of Rosta vs. Cotton on Friday, it might have been that Cotton lasted as long as he did. A three-time NCAA Division II champion, Romero Cotton was out-wrestled by Rosta, and out-struck by him as well.

“He has a freaking hard head, that’s all I can say,” Rosta said regarding Cotton’s durability. “A couple of those shots should have knocked him out. That superman punch that I hit him with, I hit him clean on the jaw, you can see it on the replay, and he didn’t go out from that one. But that one obviously buzzed him because the next one put him out flat.”

There were times during the fight where Cotton appeared to be on his way out, in particular a few instances when he turned away from his opponent. To Rosta, it’s a sign of Romero Cotton’s lack of experience.

“I know exactly what you’re talking about, he turned away a few times, but I just think that’s inexperience, and I just think that’s just him showing how green he is on the feet,” Rosta explained. “I was joking earlier about AKA [American Kickboxing Academy, where Cotton trains]. I think they have great coaches there, but I don’t think they analyze the small details that need to be refined to take a fighter at the level that they’re at, some of those fighters that don’t come in top level already, and turn them into top level. But at ATT, we have that, I think that’s the difference at the end of the day.”

Watch the full Bellator 283 post-fight press conference appearance with Dalton Rosta above. More coverage from the event can be found below.

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