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Set to return to action for the first time since a doctor’s stoppage defeat to Charlie Leary at Bellator Milan last October, Straight Blast Gym mainstay, Kiefer ‘Big Daddy’ Crosbie has reflected on an “IQ” mishap which led to his defeat — but plans to put wrongs right with a “performance of a lifetime” this weekend at Bellator 263 opposite veteran contender, Georgi ‘Gogo’ Karakhanyan.
Crosbie, 31, suffered his second defeat under the Scott Coker-led Bellator MMA banner last October, suffered an opening round doctor’s stoppage defeat to the aforenoted, Leary at Bellator Euro Series 9 in Milan, Italy — after a sizeable laceration was opened beneath his left eye as well as some significant swelling surrounding his right eye.
Starting impressively, Crosbie managed to find a home with multiple step-in elbows on the feet, as well as wobble Leary with a well-placed right hand midway through the round. Drawing a stumble from the Watford native, Crosbie began unloading with a series of sideward elbows as Leary attempted to recover.
Unable to stop Leary despite the prolonged onslaught, Crosbie, quite fatigued was himself wobbled at the fence by the boxing of the former, and narrowly escaped to hear the opening round klaxon with Leary pouring on pressure and ground strikes before the close of the frame.
Forced to rebound from his second blemish under the Bellator banner having enjoyed a two-fight undefeated run, Smithfield native, Crosbie returns at The Forum in Inglewood, California this weekend beneath the Bellator 263 featherweight Grand Prix final headliner between two-weight champion, Patricio Freire and the #1 ranked contender, A.J. McKee — tackling Moscow veteran, Karakhanyan.
Speaking with Virgin Media Sports ahead of the tie, Crosbie reflected on his performance against Leary last October and explained that while he’s not expecting anything from Russia’s Karakhanyan come Saturday in California, plans on producing a career-best performance of his own.
“Like anything, I don’t really give a f*ck, to be honest — I don’t care,” Crosbie said. “At the start of it all, they (Bellator MMA) were going through opponents, and I said, ‘I’m coming off a very experienced lad (Charlie Leary), so give me a more experienced lad. And I didn’t want to take a step back — I always want to take a step forward. And nobody can ever call me a b*tch in this sport, I always fight the best and I always fight the hard challenges.“
“The last lad (Leary) had about 40-fights, this lad (Georgi Karakhanyan) has about, f*ckin’ 300 and something fights, so I don’t care is the answer, you know,” Crosbie explained. “I don’t care what to expect from him — I’m not expecting anything, to be honest. I’m expecting to go out there and put on the performance of a lifetime. This fight is very much about me and again — proving myself as one of the best martial artists out there.“
“I made mistakes in the last fight and it cost me,” Crosbie continued. “It was a (fight) IQ problem — that’s fixed. The next time I’m going out again, I’ve gained more experience and I’ve got better. I intend on going out there and putting on a world-class performance — against another experienced lad. So a win over him is a big deal in the MMA community world, right? So that’s what I’m looking to do.“
A six-fight veteran under the Bellator MMA banner, Crosbie boasts a 4-2 record, with an illegal knee disqualification loss to Mike Jackson coming as his only other blemish. In promotional wins, Crosbie, who has spent time training at Glory MMA & Fitness alongside compatriot and surging bantamweight contender, James Gallagher during his time in the United States has bested Orlando D’Ambrosio, Oktawian Olejniczak, Hugo Pereira, and Iamik Furtado.
Senior writer for FightBook MMA. An aspiring mixed martial arts reporter based in Ireland. Producer of news articles, interviews, opinion features, and exclusive features such as, ‘The Fallout’, ‘The Breakdown, and, ‘This Week In MMA’.
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