UFC middleweight Gegard Mousasi has been campaigning for a fight with Vitor Belfort for years. At UFC 204, which will emanate from Manchester, England on October 8, the Dutchman will finally get the fight he’s been asking for.
A few years ago, Belfort was one of the most ferocious fighters on the UFC roster–though he was helped by his use of testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) at the time. Now that TRT has been banned by the UFC, however, Belfort has diminished quite significantly. This has Mousasi feeling very confident ahead of their anticipated UFC 204 showdown.
“Now it’s a [level] playing field,” Mousasi said in a recent interview with MMAJunkie.com. “He doesn’t have the ‘doctor’s advantage’, so I will beat him.”
Now that Belfort it off TRT, Mousasi believes defeating him is as simple as surviving the first few minutes of the fight, after which point the Brazilian tends to fade.
“He’s explosive and dangerous in the first two minutes,” Mousasi explained. “But I’ve seen him in the last two fights, especially with ‘Jacare’ and Weidman. He fades out very fast. So, either one or two minutes, [and] if he does his thing and it doesn’t work, he’s mine.”
Mousasi also commented on where he believes a win over Belfort puts him in the crowded middleweight division.
“I think if I beat Vitor, you have [Ronaldo Souza] now, and then I think Yoel Romero; those guys are ahead,” the Dutchman told MMAjunkie. “If I beat Vitor, then I’m right up there. But, of course, Chris Weidman and Luke Rockhold, they are ex-champions, so with one win they probably will get ahead of me. But we’ll see. I don’t know. First, Vitor Belfort.”
Mousasi will enter his bout with Belfort with back-to-back wins over Thales Leites and Thiago Santos in his wake. Belfort, meanwhile, will enter the bout with a first-round TKO to Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza behind him.
Do you think Mousasi will beat Belfort at UFC 202, or is it possible that he’s overlooking his upcoming opponent? Sound off, PENN nation!