Jiri Prochazka reacts to controversial stoppage in loss to Alex Pereira at UFC 295

Jiri Prochazka has dismissed suggestions that his fight with Alex Pereira was stopped prematurely at UFC 295, after the Czech suffered a second-round loss in their title fight.

Pereira, a former middleweight champion, won the vacant light-heavyweight belt with a TKO against Prochazka on Saturday (11 November), but some fans and pundits argued that referee Marc Goddard stepped in too soon.

Pereira, 36, dropped Prochazka, 31, with a left hook before landing a series of elbows as Prochazka clung to the Brazilian’s legs. The Czech then fell to his back, with Pereira dropping straight into mount. It was at that moment that Goddard waved off the fight, before Prochazka quickly stood up.

As a result, the commentary team claimed that the bout had ended too soon, with many fans and fighters expressing the same sentiment on social media. Yet Prochazka dismissed the suggestion in his post-fight interview, and he has doubled down in his first statement since the loss.

“Hello everyone, I just want to say to all of you: Thank you for your support,” Prochazka said on Instagram, after failing to regain the light-heavyweight belt that he vacated due to injury in 2022.

“This is for me just motivation, nothing else. Marc Goddard was right. Maybe two or three seconds and it would be a different way, but what happened happened. I accept that.

“Watch me now. I’ll be back stronger than ever. Thank you for the support.”

In the Octagon after his main-event loss, Prochazka had said: “In the end, I think [the stoppage] was right. I was out.”

After Prochazka relinquished the light-heavyweight title in 2022, former champion Jan Blachowicz and Magomed Ankalaev fought to a draw with the vacant belt on the line. That result in December meant the title stayed vacant, before Jamahal Hill beat ex-champion Glover Teixeira to become champion in January. Hill then relinquished the title this summer after suffering an injury, allowing Pereira and Prochazka to clash for the vacant gold.

Pereira’s victory made him the ninth two-weight champion in UFC history, after he held the middleweight belt from November 2022 until April.

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