Gegard Mousasi says he may have underestimated Douglas Lima at Bellator 250: “He wouldn’t go away”

Gegard Mousasi, Douglas Lima, Bellator 250
Image via @bellatormma on Instagram

Gegard Mousasi had high praise for Douglas Lima after he beat the Brazilian in the main event of Bellator 250 last night.

Mousasi and Lima battled over the Bellator Middleweight Championship in Uncasville, and after a hard fought affair, it was the veteran Mousasi who captured the belt in a unanimous decision victory. The win marked the second time that Mousasi had held the title with his first reign coming to an end at the hands of Rafael Lovato Jr.

After the fight, Mousasi was happy to admit that he may have underestimated just how tough Lima is.

“Tough opponent. I underestimated him in the beginning maybe, he’s in his prime. I was more technical, that’s why I beat him, but this is a guy who is in his prime and he’s difficult to put away. I’d rather have the finish but he wouldn’t go away, after the first round I knew this guy was gonna stay for five.

“Top three [fighters he’s beaten in his career]. Especially because he’s in his prime. He beat the great welterweights, he’s champion for a reason, so beating him in his prime, yeah, you could say it’s definitely up there in the top three of my victories.”

Despite having 56 professional MMA fights to his name, Mousasi is only 35-years-old and could still be viewed as the future of Bellator. In line with that idea, Scott Coker recently made a handful of changes to the promotion’s roster that showed what kind of direction he’s heading in, and after a handful of veterans were cut, Coker explained the reasons why he made those moves.

“The (list) is really a reflection of where the company is going, right? One of the things about running this company with 250 to 270 to sometimes almost 300 athletes is there are only so many TV spots. There’s only so much room on the roster,” Coker said.

“Sometimes fighters retire, like Pat Curran. He retired. Jon Fitch, he retired. Sometimes there are fighters whose contracts run out. That’s just what it is. We chose not to re-sign them, or they went somewhere else. To me, it’s just 30 fighters that have (are) basically gone, and we signed 30 new fighters. We need to make room for some of the new athletes on the roster.”