Just a day before quitting in the second round at BKFC 41, Luke Rockhold was thinking optimistically. His spirits were high the day before the fight, and he appeared on Just Scrap Radio to talk about a potential UFC return against Israel Adesanya for the middleweight title.
“I’m not opposed to it, on my terms, for sure,” Rockhold began on the radio show. “I’ve always been intrigued by an Israel fight, I think he is awesome and an amazing fighter. I think I’m getting better and I can test him, my striking has gotten so much better over the years, and as long as I’m in shape and I get things, I think I present a lot of problems for Izzy.”
After the BKFC 41 fight against Mike Perry, the chances Rockhold comes back for a title fight against Israel Adesanya are astronomically low. However, at the time of the interview, Luke Rockhold most likely believed he was going to waltz into BKFC 41 and put a beat down on Perry.
The topic turned to Adesanya’s most recent fight against Alex Pereira, and Rockhold had a lot of praise for ‘The Last Stylebender. He was very much impressed with the way Adesanya handled their MMA rematch (the fourth fight overall between the pair) and was even more taken aback by the result.
BKFC 41 recap, and Luke Rockhold continues speaking on the Israel Adesanya fight
“I thought it was insane. The mental ability to go in there after three losses and stay composed and do his thing,” Rockhold continued (H/T BJ Penn.com). “He put everything into it and people say what they say but he took the shots, got compromised, and landed the blows. All the credit to Izzy, I have nothing but respect and I like watching the kid fight. He’s f*****g awesome, a true champion.”
Alas, things really didn’t go Rockhold’s way at BKFC 41. The bare-knuckle brawl was extremely rough on ‘The Samurai’ and he suffered extreme damage to his teeth. In fact, it’s been said Perry was knocking teeth out of his mouth and shattering them.
The pain must have been absolutely unbearable, and Rockhold did the only logical thing: he gave up. If Luke Rockhold continued fighting, Perry could have very well knocked all the teeth out of his mouth and caused other brutal injuries. The fight wasn’t a total one-sided domination, but it was pretty clear most of the time that ‘Platinum’ was in the lead and up on the judges’ scorecards.
The world isn’t sure what Rockhold will do now after that brutal beatdown he suffered, but a return to the UFC would most likely be an extremely fun sight to see for fans across the world.
Would you be interested in seeing a title fight between Israel Adesanya and Luke Rockhold?