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17th Nov 2016

EXCLUSIVE: Bellator president Scott Coker on the potential possessed by SBG’s James Gallagher

Big things expected

Darragh Murphy

20 years old, 4-0 as a professional, three first round finishes.

The numbers would most definitely suggest that the future is bright for Straight Blast Gym prospect James Gallagher, who can continue his promising career trajectory when he takes to the cage in Dublin’s 3Arena next month.

Gallagher, signed by Bellator earlier this year, is set for his second fight under that promotional banner and he will act as one half of the co-main event on December 16.

‘The Strabanimal’ has been paired up with American featherweight Anthony Taylor for the co-produced Bellator 169/BAMMA 27 show and he’s already impressed Bellator president Scott Coker.

“This guy is a great fighter but not only that, he’s got a lot of charisma and he’s very confident,” Coker said.

“And he’s a young guy which is really what’s most amazing to me. He hasn’t been fighting all that long. He doesn’t have 50 or 60 fights, this guy’s got a handful of fights.

MMA Press Conference

“We have a lot of hope for James but, at the end of the day, he’s got to go do it himself. He has to step in there and do the fighting and I’ve always said that the truth is told on the night of the fight.”

Having worked under John Kavanagh, head coach to UFC phenomenon Conor McGregor, since the age of 15, Gallagher has exhibited all the signs of a future champion.

Combine the unquestionable technique with Gallagher’s God-given ability to cut a solid promo and you’ve got a young fighter worth keeping a very keen eye on.

Coker certainly sounds convinced.

“I think James Gallagher is going to go far,” Coker continued.

“He has to do his part and he has to put the training in. There are some killers in Bellator but when I think about this young guy’s future, the sky really is the limit.

“We will line them up but can he knock them down? That’s really going to be the question!

“It just made so much sense to sign him up for the Dublin card. We actually had him booked already for a fight in Israel on a card that took place last week but then we got the deal done with joining up with BAMMA and it just wouldn’t have made sense to take him to Tel Aviv when we were in Dublin a few weeks later.

“He trains here, his camp’s here so why not let him fight here? I’m glad that we made that move and the fans can come support him now.

“He’s got an opponent who’s very confident as well and loves to talk so let these guys talk away and next month we’ll lock the door and see who did their homework better.”