Welterweight Santiago Ponzinibbio was in dire need of an impressive win at UFC 282 coming off of two straight losses inside the Octagon. Paired up against Alex Morono, the Argentinian struggled early in his fight, but some urgency from his corner helped him turn things around late to pick up a TKO victory.
In an interview with Ag Fight, Santiago explained his thought process and what he discussed with his coach between rounds during the fight. Surprisingly enough, it seems the ‘Argentine Dagger’ was unaware he had dropped the first two rounds, but was able to find the confidence to look for a finish in the last five minutes.
“That’s what I discussed with my coach. I didn’t know I had lost the first two rounds,” Ponzinibbio admitted. “Then he told me ‘We’re definitely down two rounds. Do something different’. Thank God I thought with heart, I landed my hands and I looked for the knockout. It’s tough. Sometimes you have already been hurt, you may be injured, tired or frustrated because things aren’t happening like you expected.
“Then when they tell you you’re losing the fight, it feels like it’s all lost.” Santiago added. “There’s this pressure. Fortunately, I was able to handle the pressure and say ‘You know what?’ I’m going to walk forward, I’m going to land my shots. I know I will hurt him. I he doesn’t go down. At least I’ll have tried.’”
The win over Moreno was Ponzinibbio’s first since a 2021 decision over Miguel Baeza, and followed split decision losses to Michel Pereira and Geoff Neal. The 36-year-old returned to action in last year after more than two years on the sidelines due to numerous health issues.