Stephen Thompson suffered the first knockout loss of his career against Anthony Pettis on Saturday night in Nashville. With momentum on his side for the entire first round, “Wonderboy” was suddenly halted by a superman punch from a back-pedaling Pettis with merely five seconds left in round two.
Like most fighters who get knocked out cold, Thompson had no recollection of the events that transpired during those final seconds. On Monday’s episode of The MMA Hour, he still had some questions about how it happened, considering he had faced knockout punchers like former welterweight champion Tyron Woodley.
“I know I’ve been hit harder than that, I know Tyron has hit me harder than that,” Thompson said (via MMA Fighting). “Why did this punch affect me like it did? The only thing I can think of is it just being right on the money. Sometimes, that’s all it takes. I threw a sidekick that kind of glanced off him and put me in a bad position where my right foot was trailing to the outside of him, which put me closer to him.
“I know his back was to the cage, so all he had to do was lunge forward and, of course, when you’re throwing your punch with your whole body behind it, it makes it that much more powerful and the last three or four inches is where the power comes from. So, throwing that straight right down the pipe, that’s what did it.”
After getting to watch the fight, Thompson was able to make more informed assessments about what had happened and the mistakes he made.
“It took me a while to figure it out and go back and watch it. It didn’t look like it was that much,” he said. “Especially after Tyron put me down and didn’t put me away. I’m sitting there thinking ‘Why was that?’
“But, you know, it doesn’t have to take a gorilla of a punch to put you away. You put it right on the spot and that’s all it takes.”
Right before his Pettis fight, Thompson was already mulling over a possible matchup against Robbie Lawler in his hometown of South Carolina. While he is still looking to be part of the UFC’s upcoming card in Greenville on June 22nd, he plans to take things a little slower after the knockout loss he suffered.
“I know there’s a fight in my hometown in three months. So, we’re going to see how we feel in two weeks,” he said. “I’m not going to push it at all, especially after a knock down like that. I don’t want to jump back too soon. So, I don’t know.”
After Saturday night, “Wonderboy” dropped to a record of 14-4 (with 8 wins by stoppage).