Though last night was a joyous occasion for the Brazilians who headlined UFC 134, it proved to be a rotten ending to a rotten week for former UFC light heavyweight champion Forrest Griffin.
Griffin took on fellow former champion Mauricio “Shogun” Rua in a rematch for the co-main event of the landmark card and was easily dispatched by the dynamic Brazilian within the very first round. It took Shogun just under two minutes to put Griffin away with a hard right hook and some follow up ground and pound, leaving the sardonic American unconscious on the canvas.
“It’s just setting in,” Griffin said of the defeat at the post-fight press conference (which he was the only non-Brazilian to attend). “I think that’s a fight where I definitely could have done a lot better. So, it sucks when you do poorly at your job.”
Griffin made it clear during fight week that traveling to Brazil was an inconvenience, at least. He couldn’t find the food or medicine (apparently he needed Pepto Bismol at some point) he needed, his sleep schedule was off and he’s a guy that doesn’t like leaving his home in Las Vegas anyway. Add to that the fact that his wife was pregnant to burst and you’ve got a fighter who was ready to be anywhere but Rio once the curtain closed on UFC 134.
UFC president Dana White thanked Griffin profusely for taking the fight in spite of all this and revealed at the post-fight presser that his wife had gone into labor early, so the UFC would be rushing him to Vegas as soon as they could. Though he appreciated the round of applause he got from the gathered media, he admitted that he wouldn’t have taken the fight if he’d known his wife would go into labor early.
“If I had known it was going to work out like this, I would not have taken the fight,” Griffin said. “I was supposed to have nine more days.”