UFC welterweight contender Tony Ferguson isn’t worried about his return to the octagon.
‘El Cucuy’ has been out of action since his fight with Michael Chandler in May. In that outing, Ferguson was brutally knocked out in round two. The loss was his fourth in a row and the first time that the former interim lightweight champion had been put out cold.
Following the defeat at UFC 274, many questioned if the 38-year-old would retire. Ferguson had accomplished almost everything he could in the sport, and he was only getting older. On top of that, he had suffered the first knockout loss of his career in devastating fashion.
As it turned out, Tony Ferguson was never even close to retirement. In an interview with Sports Illustrated, the former interim champion discussed his return. ‘El Cucuy’ is set to face Li Jingliang at UFC 279 this weekend, in a return to 170-pounds.
Ahead of his return, the lightweight staple isn’t thinking about his defeat in May. As Ferguson explained, he knew he had to return to training and fighting soon. The 38-year-old couldn’t allow himself to dwell on the loss.
“Right away, I knew I couldn’t dwell on it S— happens. You take a loss, you learn from up, you get the f— back up, and do it again… I’m not worried. I’ve earned my spot, and I’m doing what I need to do. I’m going out there to win. I’ve put in the effort; I’ve put in the work.” (h/t Sports Illustrated)
Tony Ferguson continued, “It’s the mental part for me that I focused on the next day and every day. People will never understand how I felt the next day or the next month. That all goes back to my upbringing. No one grew up like I did. I grew up with a pops that wouldn’t f— around. That mental part for me—it’s not going nowhere. It’s strong. That’s the energy I use to get me where I need to go.”
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