Bellator Belfast: Ciaran Clarke Doesn’t Need Ranking to Know How Good He Is

All of Ciaran Clarke’s eight professional wins have come under the Bellator banner, and he’s staying with the promotion as it embarks under the new ownership of the PFL.

Still, the undefeated Irish standout sees at least two potential roads ahead, as he returns at Bellator Belfast this Friday, taking on Darius Mafi.

“It’s like, there’s two avenues now,” Clarke told Cageside Press during this week’s Bellator Belfast media day. “I can pursue maybe, whether it be a tournament I work towards, or— the only ting I would say, it’s a little bit in limbo with Bellator as far as the Champions Series, there’s no rankings, but we still obviously see the title fights are going ahead.”

The PFL has tournaments. Bellator has title fights. Both could be big. That said, Clarke clearly recognizes what he needs to do to land such an opportunity.

“I’d have to be in a position where I’m good enough to be considered for these things. But yeah, that’s it, just focus on each fight,” Clarke continued. “If I keep winning, then Bellator, I’ve never turned down a fight. If they tell me it’s X person next, it’s like yeah.”

“Here in Bellator, like you said, I started with them, I’m 8-0, please God be nine. I’m here to fight the best that they have, I’ve said yes to everybody. The opponent on Friday, I take him very serious, and that’s it.”

As Ciaran Clarke noted, rankings in Bellator appear to be gone. The promotion’s official rankings, previously voted on by members of the media (including from this website), have been removed from Bellator’s official site. For Clarke, however, the rankings were never really a necessary yardstick to determine where he was at.

“I don’t really care about the rankings. It’s kind of more you guys, actually, where you put us if that makes sense. Because reason being, when I’m losing fights even, Monday morning comes, or whenever, say please God all goes well, I was back to the gym Monday. It’s funny because win or lose, it’s just like ‘well done,’ fist bump. The man that I’m training with, he has a fight next week, I’m helping him prepare,” explained Clarke. “We know how good we are, we don’t need results or wins or losses to determine it. Of course that’s what this game is all about, is records and on the night, how good you are. But I think if you put it on a pedestal, this kind of big event, that’s where you crumble, the nerves get to you.”

“I know how good I am. I’ll just fight whoever they put in front of me, and if that means it’s a tournament ahead of me, or if it’s a title, or a guy that was ranked before, that’s the way I take it. And I’ll be taking it, I don’t worry.”

Watch the full Bellator Belfast media day appearance by Ciaran Clarke above.