“The Black Beast” isn’t going anywhere.
Derrick Lewis suffered another disappointing loss at UFC Vegas 68 in Las Vegas, Nevada, last night (Sat., Feb. 4, 2023), getting absolutely run over by Serghei Spivac in the ESPN+streamed main event. Lewis never even touched Spivac, who took down his opponent and submitted him with an arm-triangle choke three minutes into the first round (watch highlights here).
It was Lewis’ third loss in a row, leaving the popular Heavyweight at 1-3 since Ciryl Gane defeated him in an interim title fight back in Aug. 2021. For many other fighters, that might generate some anxiety regarding their employment status. But, UFC President, Dana White, was quick to wave away any concerns like that.
“Listen, I have a lot of respect for Derrick Lewis,” White said during UFC Vegas 68’s post-fight press conference. “I love the guy. And he got manhandled tonight. Spivac looked really good. He made a big statement tonight.”
Would the terrible performance hurt Lewis’ stock with the company?
“Not with me,” White declared. “I love the guy. I love him, so he’s not going anywhere.”
Lewis is undeniably one of the most entertaining Heavyweights in UFC, both inside and outside of the cage. But, something hasn’t been clicking in his last few fights. Since his back-and-forth shootout with Tai Tuivasa in Feb. 2022, Lewis has gone down easy in his last two battles, getting finished in the first round.
In this latest effort against Spivac, “The Black Beast” looked listless and unfocused. He only managed to throw three strikes, none of which connected. And while White may be willing to give him more chances, he simply can’t keep having these kinds of performances in the Octagon.
Lewis came into UFC Vegas 68 ranked No. 7 at Heavyweight, while Spivac was sitting at No. 12. We anticipate a straight trade to drop Lewis out of the Top 10. That’s a bad skid for someone who was competing for the title not so long ago.
Here’s hoping Derrick can turn things around.
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