Earlier this month, on the main card of UFC 205, former UFC middleweight champion Chris Weidman was on the wrong end of a brutal third round flying knee knockout. Weidman was returning to the Octagon for the first time in nearly a year after being TKOd by Luke Rockhold in the co-main event of UFC 194, where he lost the middleweight championship.
The fight was a big one for Weidman, not only would a win in his home state of New York be a memorable moment for ‘The All American’, a win over Yoel Romero would also likely mean the #1 contender spot, and earn him a crack at the middleweight championship. Unfortunately for Weidman, with the fight tied one round each going into the third round, both Weidman and Romero needed to make statements and secure the third round. Excellent fight IQ by Romero resulted in a perfectly placed flying knee, knocking Weidman out, and leaving the New York native on the canvas with a disturbingly large cut on the side of his head.
While the KO was certainly a gruesome one, Weidman attended the post-fight press conference and seemed to be doing well despite the devastating finish.
Recently, on BJPenn.com’s Rapid Fire, Weidman’s teammate, Stephen Thompson, who also fought on UFC 205, opened up on the loss, and Weidman’s recovery:
“It was super devastating. Because you know, being out there, we were both nervous obviously. And he was doing so well, I thought he had a great game plan going in and he was executing it really well. He just ended up shooting in to the inside of his front leg and went right in to that jump-knee and it was devastating for me to sit there and watch that happen to him. You know he was just one fight away from the title shot and of course now he is two fights maybe depending on how well his next performance is. So yea it definitely hurt me.”
“He is such a tough guy man and very mentally strong. And I just think that has to do with the family he has around him and that they are always keeping him positive. You know, he knows that he is always loved no matter what the outcome is in a fight. His family is going to love him, his friends are going to love him and his fans are going to love him. So he his great man. He is itching to start training again. Of course he had a big gash on the side of his head that need stitches but knowing Chris I think he will be back in the gym in no time. Hopefully we will be back training together again very soon.”
In a stacked middleweight division, with Yoel Romero now the #1 contender, many are wondering what’s next for Weidman. ‘Wonderboy’ named off a few options, saying:
“I’m thinking maybe Rockhold maybe. It’s got to be Luke Rockhold, Jacare Souza or Gegard Mousasi next. One of those three guys man. I know there was some bad blood between him and Luke so from the UFC’s standpoint, I think that would be the best fight to promote. They are both great fighters and like I said I know there was some beef there so I think that would be a good fight for both the UFC as well as Chris and Luke.””