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No. 1 ranked heavyweight Timothy Johnson and No. 3 ranked heavyweight Valentin Moldavsky previewed their monumental inaugural interim heavyweight title fight at BELLATOR 261 on SHOWTIME during a virtual media day Wednesday. Johnson vs. Moldavsky caps off an amazing main card this Friday, June 25 live on SHOWTIME at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT.

The BELLATOR 261 main card also features a top-five women’s flyweight bout in the co-main event slot as the No. 2 ranked Liz Carmouche takes on the undefeated No. 3 ranked Kana Watanabe. Also, lightweights square off as No. 4 ranked Myles Jury clashes with the No. 6 ranked Sidney Outlaw in a contest holding major title implications and former title challenger No. 6 ranked featherweight Daniel Weichel battles the undefeated Keoni Diggs in a 145-pound bout. Top prospect Christian Edwards opens the action on SHOWTIME in a light heavyweight banger against Simon Biyong.

Here is what the fighters had to say Wednesday:

Tim Johnson BELLATOR Heavyweight

“I’m counting this as a title, I’ll let everyone else put interim in front of it. Moldavsky is a championship level fighter and so am I, so in my eyes this fight is to become the best heavyweight in the division.”
“It was easy to focus on his gameplan because it is the exact same thing I do. We both are strong wrestlers and have heavy ground and pound. I guess we are going to have see who does it better on Friday.”
“My resurgence in my career comes from me not doubting myself. I lost a few in a row and it was an easy excuse to quit and doubt myself, but I didn’t, and I was able to rip off three in a row and put myself in a position to win a title.”

Valentin Moldavsky BELLATOR Heavyweight

“Yes, there are some similarities between me and Tim. My style is a little different, though, I like to take people down and finish them there.”
“Now that this is a title fight, I understand that there is more on the line, but this is just another fight for me. I plan to do what I always do and that is fight my fight and come out with a victory.”
“It is an honor to train with Fedor and represent his team.”
“His wrestling is not better than mine, and my sambo is going to be more impactful than his wrestling.’

Liz Carmouche BELLATOR Women’s Flyweight

“I plan to get a dominant finish and earn a title shot. I don’t think either of us want this to go to a decision. Weather it be me knocking her out, cutting her open or ground and pound, I plan to finish this fight in a dominating fashion.”
“It is really exciting to fight in front of the fans and feel that energy again. Walking in and walking out is where you feel it, but when I step foot in the cage it is just me and my opponent.”
“This has nothing to do with Kana and her record. I have to put on a dominant performance and show why I deserve to be the champion in this division. When I got to Bellator, I wanted to climb all the way up the rankings, and that is what I have done and plan on continuing to do.”
“Without giving too much away I see a lot of possibilities here. I see a lot of disabilities in her game that I can capitalize on that will enhance my game. This will allow me to put on a great performance and finish her.”

Kana Watanabe BELLATOR Women’s Flyweight

“I am very flattered by the comparison to Rhonda, but my judo and my ground and pound is very advanced and much different than Rhonda’s.”
“If I have a positive showing Friday, then I believe I deserve a shot at the title.”
“Liz is one of the biggest names I have ever fought, but this does not change my mindset or make me feel pressure. I am honored to fight Liz and can’t wait to step foot in the cage with her.”
“I am honored to be the co-main event on Friday. That all means nothing, though, if I don’t put on a show and an impressive performance. I plan to do that.’

Myles Jury BELLATOR Lightweight

“I try to focus on the things I can control, but a win Friday along with how I have been fighting should put me in the conversation for a title shot.”
“I credit my toughness for this two-fight win streak. I continue to show up and work hard. When I was on that three-fight losing streak, I did not allow for myself to get down. After Friday I will be on a three-fight win streak and in a great spot for a shot at the title, and I credit my toughness and resilience for that.”

Sidney Outlaw BELLATOR Lightweight

“I have improved in every way possible. Jury is just another guy who breathes air, so I have nothing to worry about.”
“Fighting guys like Michael Chandler have helped me, but at the end of the day it is me vs. me. I am confident, and that has translated to every other aspect of my life. I am prepared for this fight and am going to put on a show.”

Daniel Weichel BELLATOR Featherweight

“I think Keoni is a tough fighter, but I am looking forward to giving him his first loss. I am extremely excited for this fight and giving him his first loss is going to be a challenge for me, and I look forward to It.”
“Honestly, I don’t want to look ahead of this fight. It was easy to do that in the Grand Prix, and I did not like it. Keoni is a tough opponent, and my focus has been on him. I had a great camp and look forward to showing that Friday night.”

Keoni Diggs BELLATOR Featherweight

“I’m stoked for the challenge. This is my toughest fight to date, and it’s against the toughest opponent. I am looking forward to making a statement and solidifying myself in this division.”
“My game plan never changes. I am going to take what he gives me and beat him. I believe I am better than him everywhere, I am not really looking forward to wins and losses, but I just want to put on a great performance and show what I am capable of.”
“Just because he has more fights doesn’t mean he has mystical powers. I train with some very tough people, and I am a veteran myself. I have a lot of confidence in myself and don’t see him doing anything that will shock me when we step in the cage.”

Christian Edwards BELLATOR Light Heavyweight

“Simon is very tough, and it is definitely the toughest opponent of my career. I know my skill set, though, and I know what I can do, and I expect to show that Friday.”

“I know Simon is very powerful and athletic. It is his first fight in the United States, so I expect him to come out flying. I plan to weather the storm and then take him into deep waters where I can finish the fight.”

Simon Biyong BELLATOR Light Heavyweight

“It is a dream to fight in the United States and making my debut here is a huge opportunity. I was originally on the prelims and now I am on the main card, what more could I ask for?”
“I didn’t have a lot of time to prepare for Edwards, but it doesn’t matter because at the end of the day it is a fight. It is short notice for me, and it is short notices for him. I will be ready and can’t wait to show my skills.”
“I am here to put myself in a position to get a ranked opponent, and Christian Edwards is in my way. I think he looked good in his last fight, but I am not his last opponent. I hope he is ready because I am.”

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