clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Simon Marcus tells champion Artem Levin: 'I will take what belongs to me'

Simon 'Bad Bwoy' Marcus has harsh words for Artem 'The Lion' Levin, who he will challenge for his GLORY middleweight title for a second time when they meet in the headline bout of GLORY 27 CHICAGO later this month.

Levin, a very tricky Muay Thai stylist who has outfoxed every good middleweight in the game at one point or another, went to the most polarizing page in his playbook and deployed a hit-and-clinch strategy, tying up with Marcus after landing on him and waiting for the referee to break them up.

The Russian was docked a point for these tactics midway into the fight. After the five rounds were fought, the judges' decision was a majority draw. The lost point meant that Levin was denied a decision victory, though the draw meant he retained the belt. A furious Marcus exited the ring refusing to speak to anyone. He believes the belt should have gone home with him that night.

"I definitely feel he should have been deducted a second point after he continued to hold for another two rounds [after the initial point deduction]," Marcus tells Bloody Elbow from Thailand, where he is training for the rematch at Buakaw Banchamek's camp ("I feel this is where I am most focussed and can align my mind, body and spirit.")

"It is clearly laid out in the rules meeting that fighters will be deducted points or disqualified for excessive holding or trying to stall the action, which is exactly what he did. It is also stated clearly that little soft knees will not count as 'active clinch', which is also what he did, trying to make it seem like he was being active.

"I think the ref, along with everybody else, thought I was already way ahead on the score cards so maybe he wanted to keep it interesting."

Marcus is mincing no words as he gets into his feelings about Levin and the result in their GLORY 21 fight. Elsewhere he has blasted the champion, claiming he is "afraid" to fight him and used "cowardly" tactics.

"I feel I was robbed. I felt I did more damage, pushed the action and controlled the pace of the fight far more than Levin. Under GLORY rules these are the primary things to be considered when scoring a fight," he says.

"Also it's clearly laid out that fighters will be deducted points for holding, stalling, landing little tap shots to try and look active. He did that the entire time. It was clear who the winner was when his own home crowd (Levin now lives in San Diego) began to boo."

Levin relocated last year from his native Kuzbass, Russia to the sunnier clime of San Diego, being a big fan of the California lifestyle and also feeling that a move to the US would have career benefits. Shortly after he moved there he was brought in to be part of Nick Diaz's training camp for his UFC fight with Anderson 'The Spider' Silva.

However, the move has not been all sunshine. In the opinion of some observers, including GLORY matchmaker Cor Hemmers, not having access to his usual training setup has been detrimental to Levin's game. Levin himself said after GLORY 21 that it had been harder than usual to prepare on account of not being able to work directly with his long-time head coach Vitaly Miller.

"I don't care for Levin's personal life or training situation. To me he is just a target to knock down," says Marcus when asked for his take on this. "I know what I'll be doing to get ready for this bout and that's all that I'm focused on. Walking into the ring at my best, then I know I can beat anybody.

"I'm ten times hungrier this times around. I know I am the better than Levin and I am determined to take what belongs to me. I have made vast improvements in my game since our last meeting and it will show.

"Last time I was coming off a Contender Tournament win [at GLORY 20 DUBAI in April 2015] with two fights in one night just one month prior to our [GLORY 21] bout. So with being banged up and carrying a couple of injuries I was limited in my training and also my weapons in the fight.

"But I am a fighter that cannot be discouraged and continues to push forward regardless of the situation. I was not frustrated in the ring when I was fighting Levin but I was frustrated for a brief time afterwards at the judges decision.

"This time around I've had plenty of time and treatment to heal up to I can walk into the ring 100% with my full arsenal. This time I'm not leaving it to the judges! This time around I will be crowed the winner and the undisputed GLORY Middleweight World Champion that I am. The only judges it's going to this time are the ones I'm bring into the ring with me!"

GLORY 27 CHICAGO takes place Friday, February 27 at the Sears Center in Hoffman Estates, Chicago, Illinois. The middleweight title fight headlines the card, which airs live in the US on ESPN 3.

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Bloody Elbow Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of all your MMA and UFC news from Bloody Elbow