Alexander Sarnavskiy has three words to describe himself as a fighter: technical, angry and conditioned.
The Russian thinks the last one is going to be particularly relevant in his next bout, which takes place tonight against Marcus Davis (22-9 MMA, 0-0 BMMA) at Bellator 101.
“He’s older than me, so I think stamina would become a factor in our fight,” Sarnavskiy (23-1 MMA, 2-1 BMMA) told MMAjunkie.com.
The 24-year-old fighter isn’t one to bray about his opponent’s weaknesses. Like many fighters from his country, he believes that passion for one’s heritage is a good thing. Personal attacks, on the other hand, are unnecessary.
He will, however, calmly note that Davis’ age is an albatross in a longer fight.
“Sometimes he rushes forward,” Sarnavskiy said. “I’ll fight him standing and put pressure on him. I won’t let him even take a breath, so as a result I would be able to use my stamina to finish him.”
On the way there, those other two words will reveal themselves in the cage.
“When I was a kid, I was bullied very often by older kids,” he said. “So I have this in me, and during the fight it comes out. I will always fight to the end. It doesn’t matter how many rounds – I will never quit. I will never give up.”
The bout is part of the opening round for Bellator’s Season 9 lightweight tournament and serves on the Spike TV-televised main card of the event, which takes place at Moda Center in Portland, Ore. (Preliminary-card bouts stream on Spike.com.)
Sarnavskiy has praise for Davis’ skills and gives respect to the fighter’s impressive performances in the UFC, as well to his veteran status.
But at the same time, he said, Davis, who makes his debut in Bellator on the downslope of a 20-year fighting career, “always fights as a counter striker.” He plans to take advantage of that when they meet.
“I consider myself a well-rounded fighter, and I’m working hard on improving all aspects of my game,” Sarnavskiy said. “So what you’re going to see is a vastly improved version of myself. I’ll be better in everything: striking, wrestling, submissions and conditioning.”
According to him, one of those is already his best attribute. But with the others, he believes he will advance in the tournament.
“In this fight with Marcus Davis, I see my hand being raised at the end,” Sarnavskiy said. “This is the most important thing for me right now. The fans watching on Spike TV will not be disappointed, and they will remember me. They will see a whole variety of MMA techniques, and this will be a high-paced fight with aggression on both sides.”
For the latest on Bellator 101, stay tuned to the MMA Rumors section of the site.