No. 5-ranked UFC Welterweight Jake “The Juggernaut” Ellenberger put forth one of the most disappointing performances of his impressive MMA career at UFC On FX 8 this July, losing an uninspired decision to No. 3 Rory MacDonald. Ellenberger didn’t appear to be his usual aggressive self and was kept at bay by MacDonald’s striking range.
It was odd to see Ellenberger not putting it all out on the line as he’s known for. Perhaps he had other things going on at the time, but when you’re fighting someone as polished as MacDonald, your head has to be nowhere else but the fight. Ellenberger recently spoke up to MMA Fighting to detail what transpired heading into the disappointing loss:
"It was very frustrating for me, I wasn’t myself. I had to deal with some stuff, some training issues and small injuries, but everybody has to deal with this stuff so it was just frustrating."
Indeed it was frustrating. Ellenberger didn’t detail just what the exact issues or injuries were, but those don’t really matter at this point. He lost, and now he’s gone back to the drawing board in search of another big fight to regain his momentum. In fact, he has his sights set on a former foe that he’d like to exact revenge upon:
"Nothing's set yet, we’re still negotiating options, but sounds like that I definitely will be fighting before the end of the year. Hopefully in Vegas on the Dec. 28 card. I'm just looking for someone one the top 10. (Kampmann) is a good possibility right now. That’s something I'd definitely look forward to. UFC hasn’t offered me yet so I just have to wait. I'm always highly motivated to fight. I’m excited be back in there against a top 10 opponent."
Ellenberger was knocked out by a Kampmann knee in June of last year after he nearly put “The Hitman” away with an early flurry. Kampmann was last seen being finished by Carlos Condit in the main event of UFC Fight Night 27 from Indianapolis, so both he and Ellenberger need a big win to regain lost momentum.
And if the year-ending UFC 168 card isn’t stacked enough, added a hard-hitting rematch between these two fighters could be the icing on the cake. Is a rematch with “The Hitman” looming? Who do you think Ellenberger should face in his return to the Octagon?