Paul Daley plans on doing big things in BAMMA. | Keith Mills/Sherdog.com
At just 30 years old, Paul Daley has amassed a whopping 48 pro fights since beginning his career a decade ago.
After previously competing for the Ultimate Fighting Championship, Bellator and independent promotions worldwide, “Semtex” now returns to his home country of England to begin a three-fight stint with the British Association of Mixed Martial Arts.
Daley has been booked to battle Romario Manoel da Silva in the main event of BAMMA 14 from the LG Arena in Birmingham, England -- his first outing since suffering a decision loss to Alexander Yakovlev early last month.
While Daley will not make excuses for the defeat, he nevertheless believes that he can still hang with the top 170-pounders in the world, including a certain foe from his UFC past.
“[Yakovlev] fought a good fight. I don't feel the cage aided me much, but I'm not a sore about the loss. I don't believe too much in the rankings, as I feel for sure I can beat a few of the top-10 ranked welterweights,” he said. “For example, Martin Kampmann, I would still beat him in a rematch. I will fight whomever, but I would like to fight champions.”
A rematch with “The Hitman” down the road may not be such a far-fetched idea, as “Semtex” is only now entering his 30s. According to the hard-punching welterweight, there is no end in sight for his career, despite already owning nearly 50 bouts to his credit.
“I'm a long way from hanging up my gloves,” said Daley. “I love martial arts. It's my life, and I enjoy training and fighting. As long as this feeling is there, that is the most important thing.”
Daley’s career arc has been widely publicized. Following the UFC ban that resulted from the post-fight blow he delivered to Josh Koscheck at UFC 113, Daley fought for both Strikeforce and BAMMA before joining Bellator for a one-fight stint last year. The knockout artist then posted a 3-1 record on the international circuit before inking a new contract with BAMMA for three fights over 18 months.
“[I plan on] winning all my BAMMA fights and entertaining my U.K. fans, as well as those around the world,” said Daley. “I expect the LG Arena will be the fullest it’s been compared to previous shows.”
In da Silva, Daley faces a 34-fight pro who also enters the cage coming off a loss. While Daley admits his foe should provide a stiff test, he does not believe “Junior Killer” will present anything he has not seen before.
“He's a tough fighter, and I expect he is well prepared, but I feel that I am just a bad matchup for him,” Daley said. “I am too much for him, and he doesn't offer any real danger.”