If Marlon Moraes keeps up with his attitude, he should have little trouble getting a title shot with World Series of Fighting.
Whatever he’s been doing is working so far, both in the cage and out of it. Moraes (10-4-1), a 25-year-old Brazilian, next week meets Brandon Hempleman (9-1) in a bantamweight bout at WSOF 4. But you won’t catch Moraes getting on a microphone asking for a title shot. That strategy might work for some fighters, but Moraes is content to let his actions do his talking.
WSOF 4 takes place Aug. 10 at Citizens Business Bank Arena in Ontario, Calif. The main card airs on NBC Sports Network following prelims that stream online at MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com).
“I’m so happy with the World Series of Fighting, but it’s a decision they should be making,” he told MMAjunkie.com Radio (www.mmajunkie.com/radio). “I’m not going to give my advice and what I think. I’m just going to be ready for my next fight, give my best, and after the fight, if they want to give me a title fight for the 135-pound division, I’ll be training hard and always trying to give my best for the fans.”
That formula has worked twice for him so far under the WSOF banner. At the promotion’s debut card in November, he picked up a split-decision win over former WEC bantamweight champion Miguel Torres, once regarded as a Top 10 pound-for-pound fighter in the world. And in March, at WSOF 2, he knocked out Tyson Nam with a head kick. Nam was coming off an upset of Bellator bantamweight champ Eduardo Dantas.
Moraes will be going after his fifth straight win – but that’s not something he ever thinks about.
“I’m going to tell you the truth – I’m not thinking about wins or streaks,” he said. “I’m just thinking about my next fight. I’m always thinking about my next fight. He’s a tough guy and I respect him a lot, and I’m training harder than ever. I don’t have to think about numbers or stuff like that. Records don’t matter to me. We should think about the quality of the fights, how your opponent is in the cage.
“Today, how MMA works, we just think about ‘How’s his record?’ Guys are tough. Maybe you can fight someone who’s 1-1, and that guy’s going to beat you.”
That may have been the case for Torres, who was 40-5 when he fought the then 8-4-1 Moraes. So Moraes knows about those discrepancies in records, and how they really don’t matter much once the cage door closes.
And that’s what he says keeps him motivated and always working to improve.
“I’m constantly working and new things could be coming – maybe in the next fight,” he said. “Something new is always coming. I don’t think it’s anything crazy. Just stuff everybody does. But I can do stuff different, and maybe something different could be coming.”
That’s something Hempleman will have to be prepared for. The Idaho-based fighter went 4-0 in 2012, including a win for Cage Warriors in December.
Moraes said he won’t be taking anything for granted against Hempleman.
“He’s a tough guy and always fighting tough guys,” Moraes said. “He’s got good wins and he’s on a streak. But we can’t choose (who we fight). We just have to fight and train hard. I’m always going to step into the cage and give my best. I always want to win, but sometimes I’m going to have a bad day. Hopefully it’s not going to be on the next show. But everybody can win and everybody can lose. You guys saw Anderson Silva – he lost. It’s something that can happen.”
For more on WSOF 4, stay tuned to the MMA Rumors section of the site.
MMAjunkie.com Radio broadcasts Monday-Friday at noon ET (9 a.m. PT) live from Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino’s Race & Sports Book. The show is hosted by “Gorgeous” George Garcia, MMAjunkie.com lead staff reporter John Morgan and producer Brian “Goze” Garcia. For more information or to download past episodes, go to www.mmajunkie.com/radio.