Home UFC Gunnar Nelson Thinks Eye Poke Caused First-Ever KO Loss

Gunnar Nelson Thinks Eye Poke Caused First-Ever KO Loss

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Photo - Per Haljestam for USA TODAY Sports

Gunnar Nelson looked every bit of his No. 8-rank welterweight status in the first minute of his main event scrap with Santiago Ponzinibbio at UFC Fight Night: Glasgow.

Twenty seconds later, however, he was knocked out cold in the very first stoppage loss of his career due to strikes.

Nelson says that an eye poke by Ponzinibbio led to the knockout just seconds later. Here’s how the fan favorite Icelander Nelson addressed his first knockout loss at the UFC Fight Night Glasgow post-fight press conference:

“I don’t like to make excuses, but this is the truth, how I feel anyway, is I should have stopped the fight when I got poked,” Nelson said following the fight. “I should have stopped it then because I’m seeing two Ponzinibbios in front of me. And that was like that until I remember standing up and the fight was over.”

“I should have stopped it then and I’m not saying, like, he did a good job and maybe it would have happened anyway,” Nelson said. “Maybe my reflexes just wouldn’t have been enough to move away from the punch, but this is how I felt, like, I’m kind of kicking myself in the head for not just stopping the fight and being greedy, because I caught him and I thought he was on the run.”

Although the fight ended only 80 seconds into round one, Gunnar landed several big shots, even rocking Ponzinibbio with a huge uppercut and landing some sharp punches and a low kick prior to the finish.

Nelson insists he should have alerted the referee about the eye poke and stopped the fight to recover from it.

“I should have stopped it then and I’m not saying, like, he did a good job and maybe it would have happened anyway,” he said. “Maybe my reflexes just wouldn’t have been enough to move away from the punch, but this is how I felt, like, I’m kind of kicking myself in the head for not just stopping the fight and being greedy, because I caught him and I thought he was on the run.”

“I should have just stopped the fight, recovered my eye, and carried on from there,” Nelson said. “But I didn’t, and here we are now. You win or you learn, and I’ll definitely learn from this.”

  • Murdock

    Excuses …

  • Bill Wolf

    The fighter doesn’t choose whether to stop the fight; the referee does.

    Since the referee hadn’t opted to stop the fight, the best situation for Gunnar Nelson was the one he was in: fighting, and not communicating with the referee.

  • Murderous1

    It’s the beginning of the end for the kavanagh camp

    • deltrone

      haha probably kavanagh got lucky with McG other then that doubt he will have any more champions coming out of SBG….

    • Johnny Carcosa

      Thanks man! It shows clearly the eye pokes were intentional. No hate for Ponzinibbio, but he cheated.