Perhaps the biggest winner to emerge from UFC 119 was lightweight prospect Evan Dunha, despite the fact that he took home a split decision loss to Sean Sherk. Both the crowd in attendance and UFC president Dana White loudly voiced their displeasure at the judges’ decision and the general consensus is that Dunham was robbed. To hear Dunham tell the story though, as he recently did to MMAJunkie.com, you would think that all the blame rests on his and not the judges’ shoulders.
“What all this comes down to is that it’s my fault that I lost because I didn’t finish him,” Dunham said. “When you don’t finish somebody, you’re subject to the judges’ scrutiny. I don’t place blame on anybody. It’s my fault that I did not go out there and finish him, and I needed to finish him.”
Dunham said that his immediate plans are to “get back in the gym, train my ass off, correct the mistakes I made, and go win some damn fights.” The Xtreme Couture-trained fighter was awarded one of two $70,000 Fight of the Night bonuses but told MMAJunkie that he plans to punish himself by not spending any of the money.
“I don’t reward a loss,” Dunham said of his plans for the $70,000. “I learned from those losses, and I’m going to learn from this one. This loss isn’t going to hurt me in the long run. It’s just going to make me stronger and more hungry and more determined.”
Dunham only earns more respect for the way he is handling this loss; the up-and-comer offers no excuses, blames only himself, and gives all the credit in the world to his opponent.
“Sherk is a great guy,” Dunham said. “He deserves a win. I’ve got a lot of respect for the guy, and it was a pleasure to fight him. I’d love to fight him again. I know I could beat him if I fought him again. I think the fans really enjoyed the fight and would like to see it again. But I’m not going to ask for that because I don’t want to be one of those guys who’s whining and complaining after a loss.”
Dunham only fell to 11-1 with the loss and certainly still has a bright future ahead of him. Look for him to keep pushing forward and make waves in the lightweight division.