Bellator 113: David Rickels Knows Patricky Freire is “Dangerous”, But Says “Pitbull” Turns Into a “Chihuahua in Rounds 2 And 3”
By Kelsey Mowatt
David Rickels may have had an up-and-down 2013 campaign, but the former welterweight made sure he ended his year on a high note last October, by stopping JJ Ambrose at Bellator 103. At the time, Rickels was coming off a quick, knockout loss to now former lightweight champ Michael Chandler, which marked just the second defeat of his career. While most would agree there’s no shame in losing to one of the top 155’ers on the planet, the win over Ambrose served as a reminder of what Rickels can do.
“I would say that’s a good word to use but that’s how exactly I felt,” Rickels said on Full Contact Fighter Radio recently, when asked if he achieved a sense of redemption, as a result of his Bellator 103 victory. “Going into that fight I had a lot of emotions from the last fight. I just didn’t show the world what I was capable of. I kind of got to show a little bit more of my skill set against Ambrose in that fight.”
As a result of the victory, the former tourney winner has been booked to compete in Bellator’s next lightweight competition, which will get underway this Friday in Mulvane, Kansas. Rickels will take on Patricky “Pitbull” Freire in the quarterfinals, who is also a seasoned Bellator vet.
After impressing in his earliest Bellator performances, which saw “Pitbull” go 3-1 in his first four bouts, Freire has struggled since. In the Brazilian fighter’s last four contests, he’s only managed one victory, which came in November when he handed Edson Berto a UD loss.
“I feel like this is the kind of situation where you’ve got an animal stuck in a corner and I’m going to poke him with a stick, and we’ll see what happens” said Rickels, while discussing Freire and his recent setbacks. “I think he’s the type of fighter who’s dangerous if you sleep on him.”
“I don’t think he really likes to fight guys that are as tough as well,” added the Kansas resident. “I think he likes to more so beat up on guys, so I’m hoping to just bring the fight to him and let him know that Kansas is a bad place to fight me.”
While “Pitbull” carries a 4-4 record with Bellator, he’s demonstrated on multiple occasions that he’s a “dangerous” fighter as Rickels notes. During his run with the promotion, Freire has stopped established vets like Kurt Pellegrino, Rob McCullough and Toby Imada.
“I’m really just concerned, you know, concerned is really not the word that I would like to use, I just want to be aware that this guy is pretty dangerous for the first three or four minutes,” Rickels said, when asked what specifically concerns him about Freire’s game. “I don’t think in rounds two and three he performs as well as he should, but round one, he’s exactly that, he’s kind of a pitbull. I think he turns into a chihuahua in rounds two and three and I plan on taking advantage of that.”
Bellator 113 will be hosted by the Kansas Star Arena and the main card will be broadcast on SPIKE.