Mixed Martial Arts will soon overtake the popularity of boxing, according to Linton Vassell.
'The Swarm' who grew up in Broughton, is one of the top fighters on the Bellator card and will take on Russian heavyweight Valentin Moldavsky at Bellator 218 in Oklahoma on Saturday night.
With Bellator striking a deal with Sky Sports, and UFC events eagerly anticipated, MMA is rapidly becoming one of the most popular sporting events on television.
And though a relatively new sport by comparison, more and more MMA cages are being installed in gyms around Milton Keynes, and Vassell believes it is only a matter of time before MMA topples the popularity of boxing.
"I think it will soon," he told the Citizen. "We're attracting more and more fans all the time, bigger and bigger celebrities too. Like 50 Cent has just put $1m on the winner of a tournament. With more people investing their time and money, it will only be a matter of time before it is bigger than boxing.
"It's huge to have people be able to watch it in the UK, rather than having to stream it, risking the stream doesn't work, having to wait until the morning to see the results. It means my friends back home can watch me fighting too, so it's a great deal."
Watch Linton Vassell in action at Bellator 218: Sanchez vs. Karakhanyan 2 live on Sky Sports Main Event from 1am GMT in the early hours of Saturday morning.