With designs on world titles and a future shot in the UFC, Martin Stapleton says he's ready to make a statement at Cage Warriors 80 this weekend.
Stapleton (18-4) was a coveted free-agent who fielded multiple contract offers from around the world, but it was ultimately Cage Warriors that made the most sense to him as he looks to rise all the way to the top.
"I had a lot of offers, and some really lucrative offers, too,” he said.
"But when I weighed it all up, Cage Warriors was the best route for me.
"That’s because of the amount of guys that have come through, been a Cage Warriors world champion, gone on to the UFC and now they’re now kicking arse. And there’s a couple of guys who have won UFC world titles through that route.
“And with the fights being shown on BT Sport and UFC Fight Pass, it gives me the best platform to get into the UFC.
“They were all massive factors in signing with Cage Warriors rather than one of the other organisations.”
Stapleton will take on Anthony Dizy in a 150lb catchweight at Indigo at The O2 on Saturday night at Cage Warriors 80 as he sets his sights on world championship glory later in the year.
"I want that featherweight belt,” he said.
"I can fight at 145, 155 and even go up as high as 170. But right now, I’ve got my sights on that 145lb title. That’s the biggest fight, and I want big fights.
"I’ve got 100% belief in myself. I know I’m battle tested. I know I’m ready to go in there with anyone.
"You can put me in with anyone in the world right now and I’ll hold my own. Right now I’d beat 95% of them, and in a couple of years I’ll be at the point where I'll beat 100% of them.”
And speaking about this weekend’s fight in London, Stapleton said his focus is on one thing - claiming a decisive stoppage win.
"I never expect anything in my opponents, he said.
"I go in there with a clear mind, ready for anything that happens in the cage. I don’t watch my opponents’ fights either. I know his name. All I have to do is train my arse off, get in the cage and do it.
"I wanna get in there and finish this guy. From the minute the bell goes to the 15th minute of the fight I’ll be trying to finish him."