Wendell Giacomo will be across the cage for Paul Daley’s retirement fight at Friday’s Bellator 281 in London, replacing former champion Andrey Koreshkov, and hopes to spoil the party at the SSE Arena.
Giacomo, 27, admits he was “surprised” when the phone rang with an offer to face “one of the world’s best fighters” in Europe. The 9-2 welterweight was scheduled to compete on the same date in Rio de Janeiro, but opted to withdraw from the LFA card to embark on his first mission overseas.
Giacomo was a teammate of Bellator champs Patricio Pittbull and Patricky Pitbull, but he couldn’t make it into the LFA final 2021, because of a cut. Finally “100 percent” after a broken hand forced him out of a previous LFA show in March, Giasomo sees it as “destiny” giving him a bigger platform to shine.
“Every Brazilian fighter dreams of a chance at an international promotion to have a better future,” Giacomo stated on the latest episode of MMA Fighting Podcast Trocacao Franca . “And to debut against a legend of the sport, that only motivates me more.”
“Many athletes think too little of themselves, that they can’t do it. What I can do is what I am capable of. My potential is known by me and the great fighters that I see in the gym. Although he’s tough, I also know how dangerous I can be .”
With 11 pro bouts behind him, Giacomo can’t afford to become a full-time MMA fighter. To make ends work, Giacomo moved from Salgueiro, his hometown, to Natal, where he trained at Pitbull Brothers. He worked as a security guard and pizza chef, while also teaching Muay Thai classes.
“The life of a MMA fighter in the Brazilian circuit is a struggle, promotions don’t pay good purse, and it’s hard to pay bills,” Giacomo said. Now that I have this opportunity [in Bellator].”
, I plan to focus 100 percentage in my career as an MMA fighter.
Giacomo is set to get paid a lot more at Bellator 281 compared to his purses in the Brazilian circuit, and expects to double it with an impressive victory. Daley beat Erick Silva and Jorge Masvidal in 63 professional mixed martial arts bouts. Giacomo says he can defeat Paul .”
“He is a highly experienced fighter, so we need to closely follow his strategy,” Giacomo stated. We’re going to fight MMA, but the fight begins on the feet. I’ll do a bit of everything. People say Paul Daley is an excellent kickboxer with many knockouts in his career, but I have good strikers in the gym. We look at martial arts as a science. Patricky and Patricio are examples of this. I have good weapons to show him both on the feet and on the ground. I’ll bring this victory home.”