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Johnny Eblen plans to “maul” Anatoly Tokov at Bellator 290 to defend title, eyes becoming champ-champ soon: “I’m gonna put it on him, man. It’s going to be fun”

Johnny Eblen knew Anatoly Tokov would be next for him.

Eblen became Bellator’s middleweight champion last June with a dominant decision win over Gegard Mousasi. After the win, Eblen didn’t know when he would fight but after the Nemkov-Romero scrap was called off, he figured his first title defense would be added to Bellator 290.

“I think we were supposed to get booked at a later date because Nemkov and Romero were going to fight on this card,” Eblen said on Just Scrap Radio on BJPENN.com. “I got word that it would be sooner than we thought and they were saying maybe March. Then, they told me it’s going to be February and possibly February 4 and something happened to Nemkov-Yoel, they got pulled and we got put in.”

Once Eblen got told he would be fighting on February 4, he knew it would be Tokov next even though Mousasi was a long-reigning champ.

“It was too one-sided. He needs to get a win over a ranked guy before he can challenge me. I got to beat Anatoly and keep this belt first,” Eblen said. “No immediate rematch, I kinda thought it would be Anatoly. Guys on a winning streak, he deserves a title shot. It’s been a long time coming and I’m ready to take him out of the picture.”

With Eblen turning his attention to Tokov, he got more confident once he started studying the Russian. He believes he is too well-rounded for Tokov while his gas tank and pressure will also be the difference as he will break Tokov down and get the stoppage.

“I’m gonna put it on him, man. It’s going to be fun, I can’t wait. I’m going to overwhelm him… I’m just going to wear him out and f*****g maul him,” Eblen said. “Just outstrike him and outwrestle him and exhaust him. I think I can finish him and stop him, but if I don’t we’ll go five rounds and I’ll get my hand raised.”

Should Johnny Eblen finish Anatoly Tokov and defend his belt and improve to 13-0, he believes he could be in the conversation as the best middleweight in the world. However, he says none of that matters unless he can fight the best.

“I’ll probably be in the talk but we can’t be for sure until I fight those guys. You can say all you want, but until you go there and fight them you can’t say much,” Eblen said. “I’m just going to sit back, collect money, collect wins, beat people up and let the people talk and let them have their opinions.”

With Eblen just focused on collecting wins, he says he doesn’t care who is next. Instead, he says his main goal is to defend his belt a couple of times. Once he does that, the plan is to move up to light heavyweight to try and become a champ-champ.

“I think it is part of the next move. It’s part of being one of the best ever is being double-champ,” Eblen said. “Possibly in the future, I just have to take one fight at a time and retain this belt first. I can’t get too ahead of myself.”

Do you think Johnny Eblen will finish Anatoly Tokov at Bellator 290?

This article appeared first on BJPENN.COM