In the co-main event of UFC 222, former UFC lightweight champion Frankie Edgar was knocked out by surging featherweight contender Brian Ortega. In the wake of this knockout loss—the first of his career—Edgar was handed a medical suspension by the Nevada Athletic Commission, which stipulated he could not partake in any contact training (that includes sparring) until April 3.
The problem is, Edgar recently said he has been sparring. Edgar made this admission on Monday’s edition of The MMA Hour.
On Tuesday night, Edgar took to Twitter to back-track on these sparring comments, clarifying that he has only been doing “technical drilling” that doesn’t include headshots.
In an interview I did this week i said I have been sparring. I just want to clarify that the sparring I've been doing did not include head shots and has been technical drilling sessions.
— Frankie Edgar (@FrankieEdgar) March 28, 2018
“In an interview I did this week i said I have been sparring,” Edgar said in his Tweet. “I just want to clarify that the sparring I’ve been doing did not include head shots and has been technical drilling sessions.”
Whether Edgar has been violating the terms of his medical suspension or not, he assures his knockout loss to Ortega wasn’t as bad as it looked.
“I was pretty with it,” he said. “I recall the knockout because I didn’t get turned off or anything. Even when I was going down, I knew I had a short time. In my head I was saying, ‘Alright, short time, short time. Let’s try to get through this.’ But obviously he was able to capitalize on it with that uppercut. And even when I fell, as soon as the ref came over me, I said I was good, and maybe I wasn’t — I’m not really complaining about the stoppage, I can see why he stopped it — but I was with it. As soon as he stopped it, I said, ‘I’m good! I’m good!’ I was trying to argue. Obviously I needed a little help [to stand up], but I wasn’t all the way out. I didn’t even have a headache afterwards that night at the hotel or anything.”
Frankie Edgar will next fight at UFC Atlantic City on April 21, when he will rematch Cub Swanson. Do you think this is too abrupt a turnaround after his knockout loss to Ortega?
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 3/28/2018.