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Monday Morning Hangover: What’s next for Josh Emmett after suffering second straight loss?

UFC Fight Night: Emmett v Topuria Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC

UFC Jacksonville blew the roof off VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena this past weekend (Sat., June 24, 2023) in Jacksonville, Fla., leaving several fighters feeling the post-fight blues. Among them was Amanda Ribas, who was busted up by Maycee Barber before suffering a second round technical knockout defeat (highlights).

And Gabriel Santos, who was knocked out by David Onama in the first round of their Featherweight fracas. And let’s not forget about Bruno Silva, who became the latest victim of Brendan Allen’s devastating rear-naked choke (watch it). But, which fighter is suffering from the worst post-fight hangover, now a few days removed from the show?

Josh Emmett.

Coming into his headlining bout against Ilia Topuria, Emmett was looking to get back on track and erase the memory of his submission loss to Yair Rodriguez in an interim Featherweight title fight at UFC 284 earlier this year.

That loss snapped his five-fight win streak.

But, things took a turn for the worse for the hard-hitting 145 pounder, who simply couldn’t fire off enough offense to pick up much momentum against the Spaniard. It had more to do with Topuria’s attack, which was tight and clean throughout the 25-minute fight. And once Topuria busted open Emmett, it was simply downhill for the American Kickboxing Academy (AKA) standout.

For the duration of the bout, Topuria battered and bruised Emmett, who showed great heart despite getting out-classed for the entirety of the fight. “El Matador” was looking for the finish and seemed to be close on a couple of occasions, but Emmett gutted it through and made it across the finish line.

UFC Fight Night: Emmett v Topuria Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC

Indeed, one thing that can not be questioned is Emmett’s toughness — he kept fighting despite his left eye being nearly shut. In the fifth round, he came out swinging haymakers looking for the Hail May knockout punch, but it never came. Despite his best efforts, Emmett was simply out-classed by an undefeated fighter who was on top of his game.

At 38 years of age and on the heels of two tough losses, Emmett will likely take some time off to heal his wounds. That said, I do not anticipate him calling it a day despite his adanced age and recent struggles inside the Octagon — he’s hanging with the cream of the crop.

When Emmett does return to action, he does have some intriguing matchups that could be waiting for him, including one against Giga Chikadze, who is coming off a loss to Calvin Kattar. If not, then perhaps a showdown against Bryce Mitchell — who is also coming off a loss to Topuria — would be better suited.

Of course, it all depends on how long of a break Emmett opts to take following his latest crushing setback.

UFC Fight Night: Emmett v Topuria Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC

For complete UFC Jacksonville results, coverage, and highlights click HERE.

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