Frankie Edgar took on Brian Ortega earlier this month as the co-main event at UFC 222. Edgar was originally meant to face featherweight champion Max Holloway for the title, although Holloway sustained an injury and was replaced by Ortega. Ortega went on to surprise fans with a brutal first round knockout.
Last week, the Ultimate Fighting Championship surprisingly announced that Edgar would return on April 21 at UFC Fight Night 128 in Atlantic City, New Jersey, in a rematch bout with Cub Swanson. Fight fans have been airing concerns that Edgar is returning to the Octagon way too soon after his devastating KO.
Concussions in all sports are very much in the spotlight now, especially when discussing when it is safe for athletes to return to competitive action, considering the potential irreparable damage it can have on the brain.
Edgar talked with Ariel Helwani on "The MMA Hour" about the criticism he’s received by accepting the fight so soon.
“I’m excited to get in there. I know I’m getting flack from people and you guys, obviously on whether I’m taking this fight too soon or not, and that’s fine. I [expected] it and I know what I’m putting on the line here, and I feel comfortable doing it, so I’m ready to go prove people wrong here.”
Ultimately, Edgar wants to avenge his loss and believes taking this fight so soon after the knockout is the best way to erase the memory.
“I’m the one in there. I’m the one putting it on the line, and there’s nothing like getting in there and getting a win to erase that last loss. And again, it’ll never erase it, but at least it’ll kinda help deal with that stink, and like you said, give me something positive to kinda focus on instead of focusing on the negative.”