Doug Marshall (16-6 MMA, 2-0 BFC) thinks he made a mistake in his recent win over Andreas Spang. Sure, he got the victory, but he didn't make his opponent pay. And according to "The Rhino," that's not going to happen again.
"Usually, I don't stop until the ref pulls me off," Marshall told MMAjunkie.com (UFC blog for UFC news, UFC rumors, fighter interviews and event previews/recaps
). "That last punch I landed against Spang, I knew it was over. There's no way he was going to get up and continue fighting after that. I felt the punch connect solid and transfer all the way through my elbow, and he was done. He might not have been able to eat a solid thing for the rest of his life if Dan Miragliotta wouldn't have stopped that fight.
"That's the feeling I got when I hit him. I thought, 'I'm going to be a nice guy and let him slide on the rest of this ass whooping.' That ain't gonna happen again."
It's boastful claims from the 37-year-old Californian, but it's not as if he hasn't shown a propensity for violence throughout his career. In fact, of his 16 career wins, 11 have come by knockout.
"I just know that when I touch another man with my punches, they're going to sleep," Marshall said. "You're never going to get that pitty-patty punching from me. Dudes are not going to eat 300 of my punches and still be alive. It's just not humanly possible.
"Three words you need to know about 'The Rhino': explosive, violent and entertaining."
Marshall has lived up that billing thus far in his Bellator career. After struggling through a 1-3 stretch fighting for a few regional promotions, Marshall has been reborn at Bellator. He debuted this past November with a 22-second knockout of Kala Hose and then downed Spang in the opening round of Bellator's Season 8 middleweight tournament.
Tonight, he meets undefeated Russian Sultan Aliev (9-0 MMA, 1-0 BFC) in the semifinal round of the bracket at Bellator 92. Aliev also boasts a few knockout finishes in his young career, but Marshall isn't overly concerned. He's on a mission to get through the tournament and book a date with current middleweight champ Alexander Shlemenko.
"Honestly, I don't know too much about Sultan Aliev," Marshall said. "He's Russian, so he's tough. If this guy thinks he's going to take me down and wet-blanket me for all three rounds, good luck.
"There's not too much I can say without sounding like a complete arrogant f---, but this guy's going down. I'm going to knock this f---ing dude out, then I'm going to knock out the next guy. I'm going to win my title shot, and then I'm going to knock out Alexander Shlemenko. It's as simple as that."
And there you have. Marshall doesn't beat around the bush, either inside of the cage or out. Tonight, expect no less. Marshall promises to push forward from moment one, and he expects to see a violent ending.
"I'm going to knock this guy out," Marshall said. "I know that's kind of simple and plain, but I'm going go in and impose my will, put on the pressure, and knock this guy out. I'm just going break him.
"I don't look at fighting as a sport. This is mortal combat. It's me, or it's you."
Bellator 92, which features the semifinals of Bellator's Season 8 featherweight and middleweight tournaments, takes place tonight at Pechanga Resort & Casino in Temecula, Calif. The evening's main card airs on Spike TV following prelims on Spike.com.