Gegard Mousasi Wants Ryan Bader After Douglas Lima

Gegard Mousasi During Fight With Lyoto Machida

Image source: Gegard Mousasi Instagram (@mousasi)

Earlier this week Bellator announced a superfight between former middleweight champion Gegard Mousasi and current welterweight champion Douglas Lima for the vacant middleweight title.

Mousasi lost the title to Rafael Lovato Jr. by majority decision in his last bout but has the opportunity to reclaim the middleweight title against Douglas Lima.

Since then Mousasi has now spoken with Luke Thomas on the upcoming bout and what he wants to achieve in the sport before he retired. Mousasi has discussed retirement before stating that he would retire if he lost a rematch with Lovato Jr. but told Thomas that he recognises this is a bad mentality to have.

“I understood that’s a bad mentality to have; I just signed a new contract. I’m going to fight for Bellator championship and maybe Bader next. I have to go first beat Douglas Lima and after that, some accomplishments before I retire. Maybe a light heavyweight title, maybe fight in Rizin, I don’t know. Who knows? Things to leave some history behind.”

With a win over Rory MacDonald and now facing Douglas Lima, Mousasi is aware that he may face criticism for fighting too many welterweights. This is why he wants to challenge himself in a higher weight class and cement his middleweight legacy.

“I think now two welterweights have come up; people are going to say he’s beating welterweights. So, I think a big name to beat but I have to go first through Douglas Lima. I’m not thinking, ‘Yeah, okay, Douglas Lima, I’m going to beat him’. But if I succeed in that? Light heavyweight is the biggest name out there. That’s just for the accomplishment.”

Mousasi did say that he isn’t too concerned about being a double champ and he will only make the jump up to light heavyweight if it’s agreed as a one-time deal. The Dutchman has no interest in defending two titles at once and merely just wants the fights that provide the biggest challenges for him.

“That’s only for one fight, after that I’m going to relinquish the title because I can’t be defending light heavyweight and middleweight. It’s just a one-time deal.

I don’t care that much about being double champion, but I think it’s a fight that’s going to put me back on top again. Beating a guy like Bader, that’s a big thing. Who else is there at middleweight? There’s not a lot of big names. But I’m also happy to stay at middleweight. I don’t care to be honest but yeah, I think Bellator also wants to have that fight so I’m open for it.”

A win over Bader would be great for the legacy of Mousasi although he has already cemented an impressive legacy so far. Mousasi has captured world titles in Strikeforce, DREAM, Bellator and Cage Warriors as well as having a 9-3 run in the UFC and leaving whilst on a five-fight win streak.

Mousasi will face off against Douglas Lima at Bellator 242 on 9th May in a show headlined by Ryan Bader defending his light heavyweight title against Vadim Nemkov.

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