Saad Awad is set to compete against hyped MMA prospect Chris Gonzalez at Bellator 273 on Saturday. The fight pits a long-time veteran against an up-and-comer looking to prove himself.
Saad Awad is used to fighting just about every type of opponent, Chris Gonzalez is a prospect looking to make a name for himself in Bellator MMA. It’s not the most important matchup in the title picture but it’s one Awad needs to win.
“I’m used to [Bellator] throwing young up-and-comers at me, guys that they just sign [where] they want to see where they’re at,” Awad told ClutchPoints. ” So you know, I’m used to it. I’m used to fighting guys with hype. I want to work my way back up to a title before I plan on retiring. I know he’s not anywhere in the top 10. But at the same time, I know he’s gonna be a tough opponent. He wants to climb the ladder just like I want to climb the ladder. So I think it’s a good fight.”
When asked what the fight would do for Saad Awad’s MMA career at this point, he kept things simple. It gets him paid, and not much else in terms of climbing up the lightweight division and fighting for a title.
“Getting paid? You know what I mean? Like, I’m still making the same amount I would make had I fought someone else. So to me, it’s just another guy. He’s another guy. He’s tough. He’s hungry. So I think it’s a good test, for myself and for him.”
There is a little bit of frustration in the fight for Saad Awad. He wants to fight for the Bellator MMA title before the end of his career and fights against prospects don’t necessarily help with that. His previous losing streak means calling the shots isn’t really an option, he just wants to prove himself.
“I mean, when I first thought about [the fight] I was a little bit [frustrated] but then I was like, I have nowhere to speak. I mean, I came off a horrible skid. Now I feel like I gotta rebuild myself and that these are the guys that I have to fight to do so, then so be it. So that’s how I look at it. Then after this fight. We’ll see what happens.”
The question then inevitably becomes, ‘do you have a point to prove in this fight?’ Saad Awad takes a dangerous fight in the hopes of getting back on track in his MMA career and in Bellator. Maybe it’s time for him to take on big-name contenders.
“I think I’m done proving my points. I know where I stand. I may have to prove it to other people if that’s what they feel. I know where I’m at mentally and physically, and I know where I should be. I know I’m capable of doing so. As long as I go in there and just fight the way I know how to fight, then maybe people will start thinking the other way about me or however they think. I mean, they think however they want. So again, I’m paid the same to fight this dude. I’m going to try to make as much money as I can.”
Saad Awad obviously sees himself winning the MMA fight at Bellator 273. The outcome all depends on if he connects with a big punch.
“I just see [my hand] getting raised to be honest. Like I said, and I say this every time, I know if I catch someone, it’s going to be a short night. If he’s pretty good at keeping my hands off of his chin, then it’s gonna be a long night and I think either a decision or I’m going to finish him.”