For some fighters, a loss inside the cage is just as valuable as a victory, since it helps them see holes they need to fill in their game.
For Rafael dos Anjos, losing his lightweight title to Eddie Alvarez last July via first-round knockout helped him realize just who really has his back when the going gets tough.
"The loss showed me a lot of things. A lot of things that people think about me and people people around me how they reacted. I’m trying to get a good part of everything bad that happened in my life," he said during a recent appearance on The MMA Hour. "This fight was a bad moment for me, but I am able to see a lot of things now that were hiding before. And it’s a good thing. Everything happened for a reason and God made everything perfect. I’m learning a lot of lessons."
"I learned how people treat you. And for my family, everyone got sad, my wife and kids. It was a big loss for us, especially the way it went," explained the former world champion.
Dos Anjos quickly realized that once the belt is no longer yours, people start acting different toward you. An eye-opening experience to say the least, says the Brazilian standout.
"Then, people treat you one way when you are champion, but when you are not the champion, everything changes and people treat you different. It was good to know how people really think and we can start making adjustments and make some cuts in the near future. And when I become champion again, for sure these people will not be on my side," he concluded.
The loss was his first in over two years. The Brazilian bomber will look to get back into the win column on Nov. 5, 2016 when he faces top 155-pound contender Tony Ferguson at The Ultimate Fighter (TUF): "Latin America 3" Finale.
With a win, Dos Anjos could be on the fast track to redemption and another crack at the world title. And if the day ever comes that he has the gold around his waist, people trying to jump back on the bandwagon will get a one-way ticket to rejection town.