Mohamed Said Maalem made it clear that he plans to humble BRAVE CF middleweight world champion Mohammad Fakhreddine when they meet inside the cage once again.
Both men are set to face each other for the vacant BRAVE CF light heavyweight championship in a rematch at the highly-anticipated BRAVE CF 57, which takes place at Khalifa Sports City Arena in Isa Town, Bahrain on Friday, March 11.
The bad blood between the two stemmed from their canceled fight at BRAVE CF 50 in April 2011, when Fakhreddine opted to pull out of the contest due to illness. The war of words on social media and in person ensued soon afterwards.
Said Maalem and Fakhreddine had the opportunity to settle the score at "BRAVE CF 52: Bad Blood" four months later, but to compound the misery, it ended in controversy.
The result of the fight originally had Said Maalem winning by stoppage in the first round, but the Italian Federation of Grappling and Mixed Martial Arts – the authorized governing body that sanctioned the fight – overturned the outcome following a thorough investigation.
It was found that there were illegal strikes made by Said Maalem to the back of Fakhreddine's head in the final sequence, prompting the commission to call for a no contest.
Since then, Fakhreddine has cried foul over the officiating of the match and let Said Maalem know about it. However, the Algerian brute has had enough of it.
"Fakhreddine is known for arguing," Said Maalem stressed. "This isn't the first time. He said the referee wasn't up to standard. Once he said I hit him under the belt, and he also said that I hit behind the head. I won, and after three weeks, the results are overturned,"
"This has never happened in the history of MMA to change a result after three weeks. But it's OK. On March 11, I am going to end this story."
Said Maalem believes he's better equipped to handle Fakhreddine now, finding extra motivation from the pre-fight chatter.
However, Said Maalem is done talking now. He's ready to let his actions do the work – and he hopes Fakhreddine feels the same.
"Fakhreddine, prepare yourself," he declared. "This time, I won't leave you with an excuse. You won't find a way, no judges, no illegal strikes. I will destroy you this time."