Jackson (22-4-1 MMA, 5-2-1 UFC) handed Pat Sabatini (17-4 MMA, 4-1 UFC) his first octagon loss when he took him out by first-round TKO this past Saturday at the UFC Apex. It was an emotional night for Jackson, whose brother died just four days before the fight. However, Jackson had no intention of withdrawing and was able to honor his brother in incredible fashion.
“Going back to two months ago whenever I tore my pec in some way, if I wanted to pull out, I would have pulled out then,” Jackson told reporters, including MMA Junkie. “It never even crossed my mind, but he’s been there for me my entire career and supported me from fighting local amateur shows to getting all the way to the UFC. He’s been a really big fan of me and just been there for a long time, just done everything for me, and (it was a) very unexpected loss.
“I haven’t gotten to see my family yet. I definitely want to get there to them and just make this more a reality, because I feel like it still hasn’t kicked in, because I haven’t seen anyone yet. I haven’t been around my family yet, haven’t got to see them cry or anything. So it’s definitely nice to get past the fight and have it turn out the way it did, and now I can kind of go and be a normal human again.”
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Not only was it an impressive, bonus-winning finish for Jackson, but it came over a highly touted prospect in Sabatini. Jackson said he’s one to watch, too.
“I’m a top prospect,” Jackson said. “I want big fights. I saw him as a good opponent for sure, and he had some hype, because he’s on a four-fight win streak, and that’s not easy to do, but I’m on a three-fight win streak before that fight. Now I’m on a four-fight win streak, so I don’t look at these guys like they’re above me, I just look at everyone in my division as someone I can take out, and any day, any time, someone can lose.”
For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC Fight Night 210.