Marvin Vettori came into UFC 263 with a lot of confidence in his ability to defeat Middleweight champion, Israel Adesanya. And he seems to have left UFC 263 with at least some of that intact, despite getting blanked on the scorecards 50-45. In an interview with BT Sport shortly after the fight, “The Italian Dream” sounded disappointed by the loss but also insistent it didn’t go as badly as ... well, as badly as it did.
“I think I did a lot of good things, I think the boxing exchanges, I was having a lot of success with the boxing exchanges,” Vettori said. “The story of this fight was the leg kicks, I guess. I went back and talked to my coaches, I think 50-45 was not the right decision.
“It is what it is, at the end of the day, I’m 27 years old,” he continued. “I’m going to go back to the hotel, I’m going to go and run. Do a 5 mile run. I didn’t even take a hot shower because I don’t even think I deserve it. I’m going to go back and work and get ready for the next fight.”
As for how Vettori found Adesanya on the ground, where it was suspected Vettori might have an advantage?
“He’s really slippery,” Marvin said. “He’s game in his own way of staying on the ground. He does what he does, he’s game in his own way. He might not be offensive, but defensively he was really good. That being said, I hold the cards to beat him, but I didn’t. I said coming in that I wouldn’t leave doubt, and even if I would have won I would have left doubts. At the end of the day I didn’t do enough.”
Vettori and Adesanya traded words following the fight that led to Adesanya rolling his eyes and walking away. During the post-fight press conference (watch it), Adesanya revealed that Vettori thought he had won and Vettori confirmed that exchange.
“Right after the fight I thought I won and he was like, ‘Oh you didn’t win,’” Vettori said. “‘At the end of the day, respect. We don’t like each other, but respect.’ I say, ‘You know what, we share the Octagon for eight rounds now, 40 minutes basically. At the end of the day, gotta give you some props.’”
When it comes to what’s next, United Kingdom broadcaster BT Sport suggested Darren Till, but Vettori had another suggestion.
“I mean, if [Till] can show up, eventually,” Vettori said. “But to be honest, I like to really destroy this drunk guy who can’t stay off drinking, [Paulo Costa]. Either way, I’m game, I’m as game as it comes, I’ll always show up. You can count on me, when there’s a fight, a date, I will show up. So we’ll see.”
“Paulo Costa, I feel like he’s a little ... not straight too much. Just I don’t know what he’s about, but if he can make it to a fight I’d like to smack this guy.”
Unfortunately, Costa sounds like he’s about to learn the hard way what happens when you wage a war against UFC about fighter pay over social media.
“[Costa] said some nutty shit and I straightened it out,” Dana White said at the UFC 263 post-fight press conference. “That’s how I look at it. Do I know what’s next for him? Sounds like nothing. Sounds like he’s going to sit out and hang out for a while. I don’t know what. He said ‘I want to be paid more’ because of what all these YouTube stars are making. Apparently he didn’t see his last fight.”
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