The last time Douglas Lima fought in the Bellator Welterweight World Grand Prix, it was the smallest mistake by his opponent which got him the victory. At Bellator 221 Lima capitalized on a small mistake by Michael Venom Page and landed a vicious knockout blow to advance to the World Grand Prix Finals and a rematch with champion Rory MacDonald.
Attention to small detail is what made Lima successful against MVP, but they also have cost him in the past as well. Speaking to the media ahead of Bellator 232, President Scott Coker even pointed out those small details in the first fight between the two Lima and MacDonald, noting that if Lima would’ve made small adjustments in their first meeting, things could’ve gone his way. Instead, it was MacDonald coming out victorious at Bellator 192 in January of 2018, but now Lima has the chance to avenge that loss.
Ahead of their second meeting, Lima spoke with MyMMANews.com about the rematch against MacDonald, and why the title, not the $1 million prize, means more to him than anything else. Looking back at his last fight to get him to the finals, Lima says the smallest detail is everything.
“That’s what makes a difference between a fighter. He [MVP] made a small mistake, I capitalized. I think in fighting that’s what it takes, it takes one little step wrong, and that’s it. That’s what I did, it was amazing, it was a good fight, and I’m expecting to do the same thing on Saturday [Bellator 232].”
As the Welterweight World Grand Prix comes to an end, the title and $1 million are on the line, and for Lima, a chance to redeem himself against MacDonald is also on the line. While the money prize is nice, Lima is focused on becoming a champion more than anything.
“Belt. Rory. Money. The belt is going to stay forever, Rory is just a chance to get that rematch back, that’s kind of stuck with me since the first time we fought, it was close, so I have to get that back and I have the chance to do it. The money, it’s just a bonus honestly. I mean it’s good of course, don’t get me wrong but as far as priorities, that has to come last.”
For Douglas Lima, who sees his younger brother Dhiego Lima fighting in the UFC, money and certain opponents will come and go, but when his career is all said and done, Lima wants the word champion to define his career and his legacy.
“I want to leave a good legacy. I want people to see what I’ve done in this sport, I want to win all these titles, it’s important for me. It’s important for me to leave something good behind so people can see, so kids can follow, it’s definitely important to leave something behind. Winning this belt is going to make it even better.”
As he excels in Bellator MMA, Douglas Lima acknowledges that the time spent with his brother Dhiego only makes him better, and that bond is something that can only make his legacy that much stronger. The connection between these two fighting brothers is shown through everything they do.
“I think we connect through everything. We really focus a lot on helping each other, his success is my success, and vice versa, that’s how we look at it. We grow together as martial artists and as people. It’s super important to have a brother, somebody really close to you like that, in the same journey as yourself helping each other.”
Whether it’s growing as a person and martial artist through time spent with his brother, or looking to set an example for his family, Douglas Lima just wants to be the greatest fighter of all-time and leave a path for his children to follow.
“For my kids, I want them to see what their Dad did. I think it’s so important to leave something behind, something good.”
While he’s not looking past Rory MacDonald or the opportunity to win the Welterweight World Grand Prix, Douglas Lima does have fun ideas for his future after Bellator 232, and that includes a jump up to the middleweight division.
“After this, I haven’t really thought much of it because the focus is so much on him [MacDonald], but just keep fighting, keep defending, maybe go up to middleweight and fight for that belt as well, I’ve been saying that for a while. I think I’ve got what it takes to move up, I’m not a small 170, I cut a lot of weight, but let’s see. Middleweight is definitely in my thoughts for next year, maybe a RIZIN fight in Japan as well, I would love it, even in December I would do it, if everything goes good [at Bellator 232], I would fight in December no problem. But, one step at a time, let’s see what happens this weekend.”
The rematch is on, Douglas Lima has a chance to earn the Bellator MMA Welterweight title, avenge his loss to Rory MacDonald, and win $1 million, and he plans to do it in style. As for his expectations when the cage door closes, Lima is predicting a finish.
“Knockout. Finish this fight and get this belt in style.”
For Douglas Lima, there are plenty of rewards at Bellator 232, but only one, the championship, will help cement his legacy as a world-class championship fighter, and while paying attention to the smallest details against Rory MacDonald, Lima plans to win in style.