Marcello (13-5), who started his MMA career in April of 1998, faces off against fellow TUF 15 contestant Joe Proctor in Jaragua do Sul, Brazil, on Feb. 15. Proctor is also coming off a loss, but the Brazilian is confident his fighting style will earn him more fights in the UFC despite the outcome of Saturday’s fight.
"I’m comfortable because I know I put on great fights," Marcello told MMAFighting.com. "I’m not cocky, but I’m always well trained and ready to fight. I always fight for the finish. I do my best in there, and that’s what Joe Silva, Dana White and Lorenzo Fertitta like to watch. That’s what the fans want to see.
"That said, I want a win to be in a comfortable situation and represent my team. I want to make my fans happy, and make the haters sad (laughs)."
Marcello only went the distance four times in his 18-fight career, and his goal is to add another finish to his resume.
"You will watch the same old Cristiano going for the knockout or the submission," he said. "People think I’m crazy to go toe-to-toe, but sometimes it’s hard to get the takedown. (Proctor’s) best weapon is the ground game, but he will pay if he tries to fight his fight against me."
A decorated jiu-jitsu practitioner, Marcello has trained the likes of Maurício Rua, Wanderlei Silva, Murilo Rua, Cris Cyborg and Jose Landi-Jons as a coach at Chute Boxe team. Four of Proctor’s eight MMA wins came via submission, but keeping the fight standing won’t guarantee an easy win, says Marcello.
"I’m sure he’ll think that, looking at my record, standing and fighting me is the best way (to win), but I have evolved a lot in the striking game," he said. "You’ll see how much my striking game has evolved in this fight."