Both Vassell and McGeary have acknowledged coming into the fight that they’re both good friends and have a lot of respect for one another. Speaking with Champions.co earlier this week, Vassell said fighting his friend wasn’t going to be easy, but that when they both step in the cage on Friday night, friendship will be the furthest thing from their mind.
“Liam and I are friends, but on May 19 it’s all going to be business,” Vassell said. “We both fight in the same weight class and we’re both at the same point in our career where we’re title contenders. I guess neither of us really wanted it to happen, but it had to you know. Once the fight is over it will all be back to normal, but it’s purely business. We will get in there, beat each other up, get paid and then be back to where we were.”
Vassell believes that the winner of their fight on Friday will be the next man in line to fight for the #Bellator light heavyweight title. As tempting as it is to think about the next fight, Vassell says his mind in only on taking out McGeary.
“All these new people coming in have shook the division up,” Vassell said. “These guys aren’t just anyone, these are some of the top light heavyweights in the game. This Davis vs. Bader fight is going to be massive you know. I’m sure it’s going to be a huge fight and I’m not overlooking Liam, but I will be looking to fight for that belt after. I’ve got a job to do on May 19—it’s Liam first and then the title, as far as I’m concerned. Once that is all said and done, then I’ll be looking forward.”
Such is his confidence, Vassell believes he’s not only going to beat McGeary, but he says he's going to get the job done inside the distance.
“I’m confident heading into this fight—very confident,” Vassell said. “I’ve put all the work in and I’m ready for this. I’m not just ready, I’m more than ready. I feel like my grappling is on another level. I’m a lot more explosive, a lot more powerful than him. I’ll overpower him, submit him, and then get my title shot.”
While a second shot at the Bellator light heavyweight title is in reach, “The Swarm” also has his eyes on another man in the Bellator ranks.
“I’ve mentioned this many times already, but I really want to fight Fedor,” Vassell said. “People, for years and years, have been saying that he’s the best and that he’s the best heavyweight on the planet. I’ve not fought at heavyweight before for Bellator, but I’d love to go back up to heavyweight and fight Fedor. I’d do it in a heartbeat.”
With the likes of Ryan Bader and Phil Davis moving over to Bellator in the last year, Vassell believes the world will soon open their eyes to the fact that there is now more than one promotion in town.
“If you compare the two divisions, UFC and Bellator, I think you can see for yourself,” Vassell said. “The only reason I think people say UFC is the best is because that’s what everyone knows you know. That’s the first mainstream brand everyone knows. People still ask me these days ‘Do you do UFC?’ no disrespect, but I think that shows you just don’t know what you’re talking about. We see now lots of former UFC guys coming over now and not doing so well in Bellator—that says it all really.”