Paul Daley was in no rush to rematch Michael ‘Venom’ Page after their hugely disappointing welterweight bout at Bellator 216 but, after watching MVP’s latest performance at Bellator London II on Saturday, ‘Semtex’ is warming up the idea.
Page, who beat Daley via unanimous decision back in February, returned to top form last night at Bellator London, disposing of Giovanni Melillo via first-round KO.
Daley, who believes he should have been awarded the win over Page at Bellator 216, said he would be interested in a rematch with the London Shootfighter — but only if Bellator promotes the fight in England.
“He couldn’t do what he normally does to everybody else (when we fought),” Daley said on the Bellator Europe 6 broadcast. “In my mind I thought I won that fight. The only way to make it more convincing to everybody else is to take him out before the judges. If that fight is going to happen it needs to be a big fight. It needs to happen here in 2020, at Wembley in 2020.
“I approached that fight with the intention to win,” he added. “I kind of led people down the wrong path thinking it was going to be this brutal bloodbath when I knew I could beat him comfortably on the ground.”
Daley then went on to slam Bellator for mismatching Page against outmatched opponents and said the Brit is still unproven against the elite.
“This is ridiculous,” Daley said after the fight. “You can’t continually beat these kind of opponents. Yes, he knocks them out, but he’s expected to knock them out. What does this prove, the fact that he knocked out a guy nobody will remember? It proves nothing. It proves nothing at all. Why didn’t he do that to me? Why didn’t he do that to Douglas Lima? Because he’s not of that caliber.
“I need to see more from Michael Page, in my opinion, whether it’s a rematch with me or a rematch with another top-tier fighter. Does a win over this guy warrant a title shot? In my opinion it doesn’t. Yes, he’s a star. Yes, people love him. But can he really fight? The two times he’s stepped up, on paper, he’s got a ‘victory’ over me. Most people, including me, thought he lost that fight. Second time he stepped up against the champion, who I went three rounds with, he gets knocked out cold. So he needs to fight solid opponents instead of feeding him these guys.”
Although Daley is more intrigued by a rematch with newly-crowned Bellator welterweight champ Douglas Lima, the MMA veteran is still open to a second grudge match with MVP.
“I think Douglas Lima is the more exciting fight for me,” Daley said. “We went three rounds, and now he’s the welterweight champion again, the grand prix champion, and one of the very best fighters in the world.
“If they give me the contract, and it’s the right contract (for Page), we don’t need the hype, we don’t need nothing. Let’s just fight. I know I’m better than him. I know I won the first time, and I can do it again. Do I hate the guy? All animosity? No. I just want to prove I’m better and that he’s not of the caliber that everybody thinks he his.”
About the author