Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Former UFC heavyweight champion Fabricio Werdum is 40 years old and coming off a knockout loss to Alexander Volkov UFC Fight Night 127 on Saturday in London, England. A lot of fighters would be looking at retirement, but Werdum is trying to figure out why he lost, and looking forward to what’s next.

Werdum looked dominant early on, and was able to take Volkov to the mat, but was unable to finish the fight there. Werdum believes the issue was that he was too eager to go for the submission, which Volkov was on record as saying he had trained to endure.

”Not taking anything away from Volkov, he fought and defended well on the ground, but I think that patience was my worst enemy in this fight,” said Werdum to Guilherme Cruz for MMA Fighting. “If I had more patience, I think the fight would have been different. I came back up trading punches with him right away, and I don’t think that was necessary. Breathe a little more. But that’s easy to say after the fight, but in there I’m the one that is feeling it.

”I imposed my rhythm for three rounds, and I think I won the first three rounds, but I needed to breathe more. Like when you’re playing on PlayStation and your energy goes down and then goes back up again. I got back up and my energy was too low to trade punches like that. Again, not taking anything away from Volkov.”

”Another thing that disturbed me was my eye. … In the third round, he hit me and opened a cut right below my eye, and I was going on autopilot. That blow affected my performance a lot, and that’s Volkov’s merit.”

Werdum was successful with the single leg, and failing that, he would pull Guard and sweep, at one point ending up on Volkov’s back.

”I went for the armbar, something I always do, but I watched the fight later and realized that my leg was not in the right place. I had taken a lot of punches and was bleeding a lot, so that didn’t help me. I thought I had both hooks in, but one of my legs was under his body, the hook wasn’t in, so I lost pressure on the armbar so that’s why he escaped so well. … Like I said, patience was my worst enemy in this fight.”

Werdum said he has no doubt he can become champion again, but acknowledges he will have to win two or three fights to get a shot. He has never considered retiring. And he added he is financially secure, and could retire if he wanted to, but he really enjoys fighting. The ever-positive fighter closed with thanks to the fans.

“Despite the loss, I received many positive messages,” he said. “It was cool being appreciated. I don’t think they appreciated me that much before, and I think that now they see the warrior that I am. That motivates me to continue fighting.”