Judging by the aftermath of UFC 146, Roy Nelson‘s fight against Dave Herman really was make it or break it for the former Ultimate Fighter winner.
UFC president Dana White said after the event ended that he met with Nelson along with UFC owner Lorenzo Fertitta recently and had a very long talk about his future with the organization.
White says the meeting was similar to conversations he's had about Nelson in private and public, and that his long term goals for him are always the same: take fighting more seriously, get in shape, and make a run at this thing or it may not work out.
“We had a conversation with him. I've said it a million times, I've said it to him and I'll say it again in public, I respect him, he's got an incredible chin, he's got punching power, and I always talk about him taking his career serious and not training in his garage, and being in really good shape. The guy is tough,” White said after UFC 146 ended.
Nelson has never shied away from being the “every man” when it comes to his physique in MMA. He'll probably never have six-pack abs or a chiseled frame, but Nelson goes out and fights with as much heart as anybody in the UFC.
White recognizes Nelson's heart and determination, but just wishes he'd put the same effort he gives in the Octagon to his training and also his appearance, and it's not just about having a gut.
“When he shows up and asking me why he doesn't have any sponsors, and how can I help him. I'm not a fan, I don't even know what that is, I think that thing is beyond a mullet, I don't know what the hell that is now. It looks like a wig, he's got the big beard, his beard is grey,” White said describing Nelson's appearance.
Well, grooming criticisms aside, the best way for Nelson to guarantee his future with the UFC is to go out and win fights and on Saturday night he certainly did that.
Nelson clocked opponent Dave Herman with his signature overhand right that put the former Sengoku fighter out with one punch.
The win marked Nelson's second in four fights, and after recent struggles, it certainly seemed to reinvigorate the former Ultimate Fighter champion.
Following the knockout, Nelson climbed the Octagon cage and shouted something in the general direction of White and Fertitta. What he said exactly isn't known, but White gave a pretty good indication of what it was following Saturday night's event.
“That was Roy Nelson's (expletive) you to me and Lorenzo,” said White. “Did you see him come over and yell at us after the fight? It was.”