LAS VEGAS – Ronny Markes is excited to get the opportunity to face someone he grew up watching.
Markes (19-7 MMA, 0-0 BMMA) will take on Josh Barnett (35-8 MMA, 0-0 BMMA) in the Bellator “Salute the Troops” event on Dec. 20 at Neal S. Blaisdell Center in Honolulu.
Both fighters will be making their promotional debuts. UFC and PFL veteran Markes said he is excited for the opportunity to take on an opponent like Barnett.
“I’m so happy to sign with Bellator and more happy because I have the opportunity to fight the legend – Josh Barnett is a legend in this sport,” Markes told MMA Junkie. “I’m so happy to fight him.”
Markes recalled watching one of Barnett’s fights live when he took on Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira at “PRIDE FC: Shockwave 2006” in Japan, defeating him by unanimous decision.
But while he respects Barnett and what he’s accomplished in the sport, he thinks it’s his time.
“I watched a lot of fights of Josh,” Markes said. “I watched live in the day, Josh fighting ‘Minotauro’ in 2006, and now I’m so happy. I’m so happy to fight the guy – he’s a legend in the sport. But now is my time.”
Their fight will be at heavyweight, so Markes will no longer be cutting to 205 pounds – the weight limit he missed in his most recent outing in the PFL, making him ineligible to collect season points despite picking up the win.
He then failed to make weight for his next scheduled bout against Dan Spohn at PFL 6, resulting in the cancellation of the fight, disqualifying and eliminating him from the playoffs.
Markes doesn’t have to worry about weight cuts anymore since he will be fighting Barnett as a heavyweight.
“I’m so excited for the show,” he said. “I’m so happy and I train very good for this fight. Now (I’m) more happy because I don’t need to cut weight. I think it’s better for me – more energy, and I can’t wait for Dec. 20.”
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Source: USA Today – MMA Junkie
Read the full article here: Off Guard: Ronny Markes happy to face legend Josh Barnett at Bellator Hawaii, but thinks now is his time