Another weekend of fisticuffs has come and gone as UFC Fight Night 135 went down last weekend (Sat., Aug. 25, 2018) from inside Pinnacle Bank Arena in Lincoln, Nebraska.
Plenty of fighters were left licking their wounds, including Andre Fili, who came up short against Michael Johnson in a highly-competitive split decision loss (recap it here). And Jake Ellenberger, who was knocked out by Bryan Barberena in the very first round (recap), prompting his retirement from mixed martial arts (MMA).
But which fighter is suffering from the worst post-fight hangover, 48 hours removed from the show?
Coming into his battle against Justin Gaethje, Vick finally received what he’s been lobbying for throughout the past year: A headlining fight against a tough and experienced opponent in order to raise his stock.
And “Highlight” fit the bill perfectly.
Unfortunately for “The Texecutioner,” it didn’t quite play out as he would’ve hoped, getting knocked out in the very first round — just 90 seconds into the fight. Indeed, Vick was on the receiving end of a clean right to the dome which put him down for the count.
While the win got Justin back into the win column after dropping his previous two, it forced Vick back to the drawing board after winning his last four fights inside the Octagon, nine of 10 overall. But that’s the fight business, as your fortunes can change in the blink of an eye, for better or worse.
Understandably so, Vick was devastated by the defeat, as he relayed on Instagram:
Worst night of my life last night. Thank you @justin_gaethje for the opportunity. Tho confident in myself I did always respect you. I said what I said to get and promote the fight. You are a class act and I do appreciate your kind words last night. I have no excuses. I was in shape, healthy and confident. I blew it. For all those that believed in me and support me I am truly sorry. I will go back and keep training and loving this life of being a fighter and a martial artist. This is the life I have chose and I guess this comes with the territory. Thanks to all my friends, family and teammates for the support and thank you @UFC for the opportunity.
While a tough loss, Vick has the time and chops to get back on track, as the 31-year old likes to fight and fight often. Since February of 2017, James has competed five times, so he’s no couch potato.
As for who he should face next, perhaps a showdown against Michael Chiesa is in order. “Maverick” was last seen getting choked out by Anthony Pettis at UFC 226 last July. The loss was his second straight, so Chiesa is in dire need of a win, and he’ll try like hell to get one. On the flip side, Vick would like nothing more than to get back into the cage as soon as possible to erase the memory of his knockout loss.
Unless, of course, you have a better idea?