Heavyweight prospect Augusto Sakai is glad referee Marc Goddard allowed his fight against Chase Sherman to go a little longer than most pundits would’ve liked at UFC Sao Paulo. In an interview for MMA Fighting, the 27-year-old was actually thankful for the late stoppage to his third-round TKO win.
In Sakai’s opinion, Sherman actually deserved the prolonged beating, because of all the trash talk he needed to put up with before fight night.
“For everything (Sherman) said (before the fight), he deserved that beating in the end,” Sakai said. “But the referee kept telling him to move, and he was gone but would still move, so I think he was correct.”
Furthermore, Sakai also stated he couldn’t finish the fight earlier because of a hand injury he suffered early into the contest. Nevertheless, Augusto made an effort not to make the decision fall into the hands of the judges.
“Since I had this injury in the beginning, I wasn’t hitting him with full power,” Sakai said of Sherman’s ability to absorb damage and continue moving forward. “At some point, I wondered if we would go the distance, but then I thought ‘no way.’”
”I think I broke my hand on the first punch, but we kept fighting. Never give up. This is Brazil. The victory was mine. I can be armless or legless, but I will never be heartless.”
With a successful UFC debut, Augusto Sakai (12-1-1) now finds himself on a three-fight winning streak, with three TKO wins. His only loss came in May 2017, when he ended up on the bad end of a split decision against veteran Cheick Kongo, at Bellator 179.