Going the distance wasn’t very much on the mind of Sean Strickland going into this fight week.
The top middleweight contender would contend with Jack Hermansson in the main event of UFC Vegas 47. While he got his hand raised, the self-proclaimed ‘killer’ would get it by split decision in a lackluster battle.
Strickland only has one excuse for his performance… the bright lights and everything that comes with it.
“I let the pressure get the better of me,” Strickland said at the post-fight presser. “I knew I was better than him. You guys knew I was better than him. He was a guy that I should have, maybe not finished, but he should’ve been more bloody and messed up after the fight. But he wasn’t. That was because I took my foot off the gas.
“I just coasted through that fight. I don’t really even think I was trying that hard. I kind of sucked, but it is what it is. That’s what you get for being a p*ssy. No bonus for me.”
Like his ‘lookalike’ Michael Bisping said, Strickland also believes he coasted throughout the fight, not giving it his absolute all.
This pressure applied to Strickland wouldn’t come from the millions of fans watching around the world. Instead, it came from all the way up in corporate. The UFC brass was watching to see whether or not they’d give him the next shot at the title. With UFC 271: Adesanya vs. Whittaker 2 coming so soon, it’s totally understandable for Strickland.
“I’ve got a lot of fancy f*ckers wearing suits, and they come up and talk to me about title fights and things of that nature. You hear that all the time and you start thinking, ‘Do I really want to risk getting knocked out when I can go for a title fight?’ So I let the fancy folks in the suits throw me off a little bit. But it won’t happen again.”
As Strickland looks to keep his promise, he pleads his case for a crack at UFC gold.
“At the end of the day, if f*cking ‘Izzy’ (Israel Adesanya) wins, man, unless (Jared) Cannonier wins, he’s ran through the division. Come on, let’s get some fresh blood in. We don’t want to see another repeat. Let’s have one white trash motherf*cker take a crack at it.”