Saturday evening, #DouglasLima defeated #LorenzLarkin to retain his Bellator Welterweight title at Madison Square Garden. Lima took all three scorecards after a convincing twenty-five minute performance where he seemed to have the measure of Larkin throughout.
Speaking exclusively to Champions.co earlier today, Lima spoke about his victory and how he hopes it will win him the respect of the fans.
“That was a tough fight fight—Lorenz is a very tough guy and it wasn’t easy at all,” Lima said. “I was able to get him a few times and land some solid shots, but he kept coming back at me and he never let up. I wasn’t able to get the finish, but overall, I’m happy I’ve retained my belt on such a big stage. To get a win against a high-level opponent is a big thing for me. I think it’s about time I started to get the respect I think I’m due. Larkin is one of the best out there in our division and I won the fight well. Hopefully I will get the respect I deserve now with a win like that.”
It's often the way in MMA that no sooner a champion has conquered one challenger, fans and media are already calling for them to move onto the next. Minutes after having the belt strapped around his waist, the number one contender for Lima's title, Rory MacDonald issued the challenge and said that Lima would be, 'Just another body in the grave'.
Lima heard about MacDonald's threats and was none to impressed.
“Rory can say whatever the hell he wants,” Lima said laughing. “He’s going to answer for it when he steps in there with me. I’m going to show him why I’m the champion and why he’s wrong. I’m going to beat him.”
The champion doesn't want to wait around either. He's happy for the fight to happen as soon as he's cleared and he's hoping that's before the end of the year.
“I believe they wanted that fight to happen in September, but I’m going to have to get an X-ray on my foot,” Lima said. “If it’s not broken, then I’m happy to go again in September or October. I want to fight him as soon as I can—lets do it this year. I just want to keep defending this belt, get some finishes and keep the belt forever. I’ve got maybe eight more years of fighting, so why not just keep defending this belt against all the top contenders.”
Bellator's welterweight division is heating up nicely.