Early this month, former UFC lightweight champion Frankie Edgar suffered the first-ever stoppage loss of his career when he was knocked out in the first round by Brian Ortega. But instead of taking a break, he decided to immediately jump back in a month and a half later to co-headline the UFC’s upcoming Atlantic City card against Cub Swanson in a rematch.
The 36-year-old Toms River native says he understands the concerns about taking another fight that soon, but at the same time, he feels nothing wrong about the decision he made.
“I’m excited to get in there,” Edgar said on Monday’s episode of The MMA Hour (via MMA Fighting) “I know I’m getting flak from people and you guys, obviously on whether I’m taking this fight too soon or not, and that’s fine. I [expected] it and I know what I’m putting on the line here, and I feel comfortable doing it, so I’m ready to go prove people wrong here.”
“I’m the one in there,” he continued. “I’m the one putting it on the line, and there’s nothing like getting in there and getting a win to erase that last loss. And again, it’ll never erase it, but at least it’ll kinda help deal with that stink, and like you said, give me something positive to kinda focus on instead of focusing on the negative.”
As for being knocked out for the first time, “The Answer” recognized Ortega’s performance, but at the same time assured that it was not something that was too damaging to handle.
“I just didn’t see (the elbow shot) coming,” Edgar said. “I think that’s what it is more than anything. Everyone says, ‘Oh, it was the hardest shot you got hit with.’ It’s not always about the hardest one. The one you don’t see coming, I think, rocks you. You’re not expecting it and I just didn’t see that elbow when it got through.”
“It happens. You see it happen every fight night, pretty often, so it is what it is,” he added. “It’s definitely, it sucks. It sucks going home to your kids and they’re asking what happened and you’ve got to tell them what happened, and yeah, it’s not something I’m proud of, but again, it happened. What am I going to do?”
UFC Atlantic City is slated to take place on April 21st. It will be headlined by a lightweight fight between top contenders Edson Barboza and Kevin Lee.
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