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Monday Morning Hangover: Roy Nelson’s hot streak -- and perhaps UFC career -- comes to an end at UFC 161

After an action-packed UFC 161 event in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, plenty of fighters are still feeling the buzz, but Roy Nelson is likely suffering from the worst post-fight hangover after losing to Stipe Miocic in what was his final fight on his current UFC contract.


Another weekend of fisticuffs has come and gone as UFC 161 blew the roof off MTS Centre last Saturday night (June 15, 2013) in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.

Many combatants were left licking their wounds after a wild night of fights including Dan Henderson, who suffered his second straight loss inside the Octagon, this time to Rashad Evans (watch highlights here). And Pat Barry, who was pasted by a barrage of strikes from Shawn Jordan that put "HD" down for the count in under a minute (read about it here).

But which fighter is suffering from the worst post-fight hangover, now two days removed?

Roy Nelson.

The heavy-handed heavyweight not only attempted to keep his momentum going and add to his current three-fight win streak, but looked to gain some leverage in his upcoming contract negotiations with a victory.

Stipe Miocic, however, was having none of it.

The former NCAA Division-1 wrestler looked to get back on track himself after getting knocked out by Stefan Struve nine months ago; the first and only loss of his mixed martial arts (MMA) career.

And he did just that by using Nelson as a punching bag for 15 minutes. Miocic battered the pudgy pugilist from pillar to post but was unable to put away his foe who proved -- just like he did against Fabricio Werdum and Junior dos Santos -- that he can take a licking and keep on ticking.

After the dust settled, the judges gave Stipe the unanimous nod, ending "Big Country's" run and taking away his upper hand at the negotiation table, too.

So, what went wrong for Nelson?

Much like Rafael Cavalcante in his loss to Thiago Silva, cardio was the issue here.

It's no secret that Roy's thick frame has always been a hot topic. Against Stipe, the husky heavyweight was visibly huffing and puffing, struggling to muster up the strength to throw a powerful punch in the final frame.

In between rounds, "Big Country" could be seen bent over in exhaustion, a sign that despite his claims he was in fight shape, he clearly was not. In Nelson's defense, he did take the fight on two week's notice. So, maybe that's why his cardiovascular conditioning wasn't up to snuff.

Proving he is indeed a team player, Roy took the bout in attempts to salvage an event which once included the likes of UFC interim bantamweight champion Renan Barao, Mauricio Rua and Antonio Rogerio Nogueira. However, his plan to earn his second win in two months, backfired.

Who should "Big Country" fight next, assuming he still has a contract with ZUFFA next week?

Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira.

"Big Nog" underwent surgery last week after the aforementioned Werdum nearly broke it (again) two weeks ago at UFC on FUEL TV 10. Nogueira's layoff could give Nelson and the higher ups at ZUFFA time to hash out a new fight deal.

And given Nelson's tumultuous relationship with UFC President Dana White, it could take a while to come to an agreement.

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