Esther Lin, MMA Fighting
Mousasi, who is the current Bellator middleweight champion, has a long history of success across multiple combat sports. A former Strikeforce and Dream champion, Mousasi also owns an undefeated kickboxing record and was a amateur national boxing champion in the Netherlands back in 2001. Mousasi even previously considered trying out for the Dutch national boxing team back in 2012, but ultimately chose his MMA career instead. Now, 10 years later, Mousasi is once again showing his interest in the sweet science.
“Unfortunately I’ve fought twice the last two years,” Mousasi said on Wednesday’s episode of The MMA Hour. “I would have loved to fight more but it’s the pandemic. They’re gonna keep me busy this year. Three times, and I want to fight Anderson Silva in boxing. My managers are gonna push for that fight. You, Anderson, don’t run away from me.”
Silva has his own long history with boxing, and following his exit from the UFC in 2020, “The Spider” has rejuvenated his career by returning to the squared circle. Silva boxed twice in 2021, taking a decision win over former WBC middleweight champion Julio Cesar Chavez Jr then knocking out Tito Ortiz in 82 seconds.
Though both Silva and Mousasi fought in the UFC for some time, the two never managed to cross paths in MMA. But given Silva’s resurgence in boxing, and Bellator’s partnership with Showtime, Mousasi believes the time is right for these two legends to finally square off.
“Now it’s up to him,” Mousasi said. “I think it’s not very interesting [to fight him in MMA]. In MMA he has lost, but in boxing he’s still winning. I think it’s different and it’s more entertaining.
“I threw it out to Scott [Coker] and Showtime. … I’ve been pushing for it.”
Before he can start focusing on the sweet science, though, Mousasi has to handle some MMA business first. This Friday, Mousasi defends his Bellator middleweight title against Austin Vanderford in the main event of Bellator 275 at the 3Arena in Dublin.