Frankie Edgar is putting things in perspective after suffering a knockout loss to Chris Gutierrez at UFC 281 in what will serve as the final fight of his career.
Addressing the loss for the first time since Saturday, the former UFC lightweight champion admitted that he absolutely didn’t want things to end that way but he also knows that’s just the brutal nature of mixed martial arts.
” “Obviously, I’m heartbroken,” Edgar stated on his podcast Champ. “That’s not how I want to go. It’s just the way things are.
“You saw [the knockout], everybody saw it. It f****** sucks but how can I complain to be honest. The whole time I was there, people cheered my name. I know I work hard to get where I got. Like f****** hard, very hard. My whole life, I made sacrifices. I put my all into my athletic career since day one but who the f*** am I to complain? There’s people out there that work hard and they just make it by. Both sides are true for me. It’s all about being grateful for the journey I had. Thankful for the experience .”
Perhaps the hardest reality Edgar faced after his death was realizing that his children and wife were just feet from him as he prepared for battle.
It was actually the first time Edgar’s daughter was old enough to attend one of his events, which makes the sting of this particular defeat hurt that much more because his kids had to witness it.
” I didn’t want to let my children see me leave that way,” Edgar stated. My family, all that stuff. Cause they’ve got to go deal with it, too.
” My kids have seen enough to know that kids can be scumbags. I’m not going to say where, who or which kid but one of my kids does something in their group and one of the group kids starts taking s***, saying this and that. Either that kid’s being a young scumbag kid or his parents don’t teach him no f****** manners. They’re still kids at the end, but my children have to learn how to handle it
Edgar did not offer any excuses after Gutierrez’s jumping knee strike, which landed flush, sent Gutierrez crashing to the ground.
While he will undoubtedly be bombarded by questions about why the knockout occurred, Edgar insists that he was just caught. That’s the way the sport sometimes goes.
“Either my speed is too slow or I don’t see f ****** anything up the middle,” Edgar stated. “Damn, the last three up the middle. I guess I don’t have to worry about that stuff no more.
“But again, I’m a very prideful person and all these people ‘my chin, his chin, his chin.’ I don’t know if my chin’s that bad. I know how I am in the gym. That first combo hit me with that spinning back fist. Although it was quite f ****** difficult, I enjoyed the food. Knees and kicks are just a different animal. I didn’t see them coming either but I’ve got nothing to be ashamed of and I’ve really got nothing to hang my head about.”
Edgar calls the loss “embarrassing” but he’s also putting the moment behind him to focus on the future where he plans to get into coaching and helping his kids achieve their own dreams now that his fighting career is over.
It may be a while until the pain from this loss is gone, but Edgar knows that time heals all wounds. He’ll continue to move forward because it’s what he has always done.
“Now it’s over. It is in my rearview. It’s just f****** close in the rearview right now,” Edgar said. “But it’s going to get further away like everything does and in the big scheme of things, how f****** important is it? Is it? It’s not clear to me. I would love to have gone out with a higher note. This is what I desired. This is what I hoped to achieve.
“What sucks, too, I didn’t even get to f****** go. Perhaps it would have been more effective if I had just gone and performed another F ****** performance, and then lost an F ****** judgment or something similar. With some minor bruises, I managed to leave with the knowledge that I had f ****** again put my hand on it. It was on the line again, but this time in a completely different manner. It was not my turn to display it. Also, remember that I wasn’t sure what to do next after this experience. I returned because I felt good. My body felt pretty good to do it and I gave it that shot and it didn’t work out. It’s time to admit that I don’t want it. I don’t want to be but I’ve got to be. Let’s be real. It’s in the past, it’s behind me.”