‘The Pikeman' Brian Moore has had a long journey to this point, fighting the toughest featherweights in Europe for the past six years. Currently 1-1 in Bellator, the Wexford native is out to prove his time has come and he is ready to take on the elite in the division.
When Moore made the walk for his professional debut at Chaos Fighting Championship 8 in February 2011, there were a few notable names on the card. The Wexford native shared the card with SBGi teammates Paddy Holohan and Conor McGregor, and amazingly, in the opening bout of the night, a 14 year old James Gallagher made his amateur debut.
It seems a lifetime ago within the realm of mma in Ireland, but Moore remembers it fondly. No-one could have predicted the path that those fighters would take from that day, and Moore believes it is a testament to that generation of Irish fighters that he will make the walk on November 10th.
“At that stage no Irishman had made a break-through and won on any major show. Now our small island is respected in mixed martial arts worldwide. It's because of pioneers such as Conor, Paddy, Ais (Daly), Cathal (Pendred), (Neil) Seery, (Paul) Redmond etc who led the way. To be the first Irishman to headline a Bellator card is a big deal and it's something I'll be proud of.”
Unfortunately Moore's first Bellator main event is a little bitter-sweet, as it comes at the expense of training partner James Gallagher, who was forced to withdraw from his scheduled bout due to injury.
“I'm gutted for James. He was looking excellent in training. James has one of those mindsets in where he will come back far stronger. I am ready and I have been ready for quite a while. this could be a performance that will make everyone stand up and take notice.”
The ‘Pikeman' looks to those that have gone before him, those who blazed the trail for others to follow. In July 2014, Moore was coming off back to back losses for the first time in his career and the big stage felt further away than it had ever done. The Irishman went to the 3 Arena (the venue for November 10th's showdown) to support his teammates at UFC Dublin. Moore remembers the atmosphere and wants to have that feeling on November 10th.
“That was one of the most inspiring nights of my life. Fighting in front of my fellow countrymen and women fills me with pride. It's always electric. Us Irish always get behind our own and have a deep history in in combat. On November 10th The roof will be lifted once more.”
Moore has been looking for the AJ McKee fight for some time now, repeatedly asking for the fight over the passed few months.
Talk is cheap and for the weak.
If you insult my country or my team to secure a fight – save your breath and send me the contract
SBG IRE pic.twitter.com/c0yAukYpS5
— Brian Moore (@ThePikemanMoore) May 23, 2017
Far from a lack of respect for the youngsters skills, the ‘Pikeman' is complementary of the Team Body Shop products skill-set. Moore believes however, that this is his time and he would like to gain some of the promotional rub that McKee has been garnering through his unprecedented Bellator run thus far.
“I think it's a perfect fight. Both AJ and I are exciting, dynamic and well rounded. It's fireworks guaranteed. The Irish fans and Bellator fans around the world are paying to see a fight – they won't be disappointed.”
The SBGi product is certain that his time has come and doesn't need much by the way of motivation but is motivated to put on the performance of his career.
“My last fight was a Clinic on how to win every second of a fight. Unfortunately many didn't see this. But people across the world will be tuning in on November 10th to an even better Brian Moore.”
Tune in to see McKee and Moore headline Bellator 187 on November 10th and if the ‘Pikeman' is to be believed, it will be worth your while tuning in, as there will be “fireworks”.
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