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UFC 209’s Stephen Thompson on Tyron Woodley: ‘He hit me with his best, still couldn’t finish me’

MMA: UFC 205-Woodley vs Thompson Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports

At UFC 205 last November, Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Welterweight champion Tyron Woodley and Stephen Thompson fought to a draw after 25 minutes of action, which ultimately allowed "The Chosen One" to hand on to his title.

Despite begin a close fight, Thompson says he’s been beating himself up ever since because he knows he didn’t show his best stuff and didn’t pull the trigger when he had the chance. On the flip side, knowing that Woodley did hit him with his best shot and still couldn’t finish him gives him more confidence and fuel heading into the rematch.

"I felt like I could’ve gone another three rounds after that," said Thompson during a recent appearance on UFC Unfiltered podcast. "I felt fine, I felt great. I just didn’t put out enough, just didn’t do it. I didn’t pull the trigger and I’ve been beating myself up about it ever since."

Thompson found himself in trouble during the bout, getting rattled by one of Woodley’s ferocious strikes and getting caught in an air-tight guillotine (relive it here). But knowing that he weathered that storm only boosts his confidence.

"It fuels me know that I wasn’t at my best, while Tyron was at his best, he hit me with his best shots, had a deep guillotine choke on me and still couldn’t finish me," said "Wonderboy."

"So that gives me the fuel and fire to get out there and do it again. To train as hard as I can knowing that," he concluded.

The two men will run it back in the main event of UFC 209 on March 4, 2017 inside T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. All part of a star-studded pay-per-view (PPV) event that will feature a co-main event bout between Khabib Nurmagomedov and Tony Ferguson. Meanwhile, Mark Hunt will put his issues with the promotion aside to battle Alistair Overeem, whom "Super Samoan" says he was forced to fight.

For more on that card click here.

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