In my fight against Sean Sherk, I accomplished a few goals, but fell short of my dream. On the positive – I fought in a world title fight for the UFC, fought a 5 round war, got the respect of my opponent and put on a fight that UFC fans loved.
Unfortunately, I did not execute what I had trained to do in order to win this fight. I take a lot of pride in being technically and tactically sharp. In this respect, I am very disappointed with my performance. Despite this lapse, my heart, my faith in God and my will to win were stronger than ever. I had several opportunities in my grasp to win, but my efforts fell short. Sean Sherk is simply too good and too experienced for me to have had an off night.
The fight was a bloody war. Blood was in my eyes, ears, mouth and everywhere else. At one point, I had to cover Sherk’s cut so the blood would stop going into my eyes. Between rounds, Stitch (my cutman), thought I was cut because I had a huge pool of blood on my head. Dealing with that much blood was tough as it made it hard to see and to hold on to Sherk. It almost made me regret striking him. Of course, it also must have been difficult for Sherk to deal with. After the fight, I needed 3 showers to get all the blood off my body.
Sean Sherk was the better fighter that night. There is no doubt that he deserves to be the UFC lightweight World Champ. I thank him for going to war with me. Before the fight, I admired Sean for his dedication to the sport and career achievements. After the fight, I became a fan. I know he will be a great champion. As he got a second chance at the world title and learned from his first loss, I hope the same fate awaits me.
My MMA coaches Mark DellaGrotte and my brother Keith did an incredible job preparing me for this fight. Along with the great training at Sityodtong in Somerville, MA., I had first-rate coaching from the wrestlers at the Doughboy Wrestling Club in Lowell, MA. My strength and conditioning coach Doug Dupont had me in the best shape of my life. I felt like I could have done another 3 hard rounds. I have to thank my coaches for developing a great game plan. They knew what to expect and trained me to perform much better than what I showed.
I would like to sincerely thank the following people and groups who helped me with my training and preparation for this fight: Neil Legallo, Drew Fickett, Mike & TJ from the Doughboy Wrestling Club, Mike Denny & Co., Justin Garcia, Steve Whittier, Mike Littlefield, Lance Everson, Scott, Alex, OntheMat.com (Scott Nelson), Elsie Wong, Kevin Kearns, Raffi Nahabedian, Shelley, Dave Mazzolla, and everyone else from the Sityodtong Camp and Gracie Barra Boston.
I would like to thank Dana White, the Fertittas and everyone at the UFC. They have always treated me with respect and professionalism. It is no accident why they are the top MMA organization in the world today.
Thank you to my family, friends and girlfriend for all the love and support. I could not fight without you in my corner. I also need to thank my business manager Ron Weinberg for all of his help and tireless work.
To my fans, your support is deeply appreciated. I assure you that the experience of training and battling to the end in a highly competitive championship fight has made me a stronger fighter.
I also must thank the following companies for their great contributions and support: Sprawl Fight Shorts (Sprawl.tv), Naga Fighter (Nagafighter.com), TUF Guy (PFTV), NHB Gear (Nhbgear.com), Shoyoroll Clothing (Shoyoroll.com), Burn with Kearns (Burnwithkearns.com), EFI-Total Gym (EFISportsMedicine.com) and Tourtellote Solutions (Tci9.com).
Stay with the Flo,