Danilo Marques: Making Up for Lost Time

PFL
June 12, 2024
An ill-timed injury has Danilo Marques playing catch-up in the Professional Fighters League.

The 38-year-old Kings MMA rep will return to the cage for the first time in almost 10 months when he locks horns with fellow Ultimate Fighting Championship veteran Tim Johnson in a PFL 4 heavyweight prelim on Thursday at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut. Marques was absent from the PFL’s initial wave of heavyweight bouts in April.

“I couldn’t fight during the first round because I suffered a fractured clavicle,” he told Sherdog.com. “I already had an opponent, but I couldn’t fight. I broke it five weeks beforehand. That’s why I couldn’t score any points.”

It leaves Marques in an unenviable position.

“If you look at the standings, there’s one guy with six points, two with five and one with four,” he said. “They will all fight again. Of all who won, none of them got hurt. If one of them dropped out, things would get interesting, but they have a chance to score again. It’s hard to get into the semifinal with only one fight, but nothing is impossible. I’m going to do my best to get the score that’s necessary. There’s no way I can fully control it.”

Johnson, meanwhile, fills in as a short-notice replacement for Gokhan Saricam, who withdrew from the event for undisclosed reasons.

“I don’t exactly know what happened to Gokhan,” Marques said. “I didn’t hear that he’s hurt. I just heard he may be out due to personal matters. I’m feeling fine. I did a nine-week camp. My stamina is way up.”

The 6-foot-3, 260-pound Johnson brings a wealth of experience to the table. The Xtreme Couture export has rattled off back-to-back victories since he endured consecutive losses to Valentin Moldavsky, Fedor Emelianenko and Linton Vassell under the Bellator MMA banner between June 25, 2021 and April 15, 2022. Johnson, 39, last competed at an Xtreme Fighting Championships show on April 12, when he needed less than two minutes to dispose of Darion Abbey. He was a two-time NCAA All-American wrestler at Minnesota State University Moorhead.

“The game is completely different now,” Marques said. “Now I’m facing someone who’s more of a wrestler who also has heavyweight striking. He’s a southpaw. We’ve made the adjustments in the week we had [after the change was announced]. My physical condition is great. We’re here to do our work. No need to overthink it. We’ve made the adjustments. Now, it’s off to battle.”

Marques steps back into view with some momentum of his own. He has won four of his past five bouts and last appeared at PFL 8, where he took a three-round unanimous decision from 2008 Olympic gold medalist Satoshi Ishii on Aug. 18. No matter the outcome against Johnson, Marques wants to move forward with the PFL for the foreseeable future.

“I’m not the kind of guy who makes too many plans,” he said. “Now, it’s all about winning this fight. Then we’ll see what awaits us in the PFL.”

Reference: https://www.sherdog.com/news/articles/Danilo-Marques-Making-Up-for-Lost-Time-194001

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