Entering UFC 224 on Saturday night, Ronaldo Souza was confident that he would be able to continue his winning streak against Kelvin Gastelum. Instead, “Jacare” ended up losing via a split decision verdict.
The multiple-time ADCC champion did find some success in the first round, but became a bit more sluggish in his movements during the second and third rounds. During the post-fight press conference, he admitted that he was not able to cut weight effectively, and this is what he attributes the loss to.
“Nobody likes to lose,” Souza said through a translator (via MMA Fighting). “I’m at home, I’m here in Brazil. The whole crowd was behind me. I’m very, very sad to lose. It’s disappointing to me to lose here at home in the way that I lost. I should’ve done better. I should’ve cut weight better. I felt my legs and that made it very complicated.”
“It was my fault I lost, it happens. Kelvin had a good game plan, he was doing well in the fight, we had a great fight, but I lost. And I want everyone to know that I did everything I could to win. I really wanted to win this fight.”
Jacare affirms that he has always cut weight correctly, but for this fight, he was kind of forced to take some matters into his own hands, because of some limitations that were presented to him at the time.
“I’m very healthy. I always cut weight pretty well, but this time I jumped rope a bit too much because there was no sauna in the hotel,” he explained. “So I jumped too much rope and that’s why I think I felt my legs because of that, but that was it.”
“There are things that happen. We had a great fight and that’s what matters.”
The 38-year-old Souza now dropped to a record of 25-6, with one No Contest verdict and 21 wins by stoppage.