Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Justin Gaethje put on a thunderous performance against Edson Barboza at UFC Philadelphia over the weekend (Sat. March 30, 2019).

Gaethje caught the Brazilian striker with a wild overhand as he was backing away. The blow rendered Barboza – the owner of arguably the greatest knockout win in UFC history – unconscious in the first round. However, just prior to the knockout, Barboza’s eye was noticeably bothering him.

His manager, Alex Davis, took to Twitter to share a photo of the eye poke, claiming it dictated the way the fight played out:

“Not meaning to make excuses, but this did dictate the fight.”

Coach Agrees As Well

Another member of the Barboza team, his Muay Thai coach, Anderson Franca, had some comments on the situation via his Instagram:

“I really think that this fight would be one of the best fight of the year. [Justin Gaethje] is an excellent fighter, he is certainly among the best in the world.

“We have a lot of respect for him and his team, I do not know if the result would be another or not, but I believe that the fight would have been much longer if there was no such incident. We appreciate the affection of all, I can guarantee that we [dedicate] 100 percent to represent our country. Big hug to all.”