The ordering process for Ultimate Fighting Championship pay-per-views has changed: UFC 244 is only available on ESPN+ in the U.S.
Stephen Thompson wound back the clock at UFC 244 this past weekend, putting on a clinical striking performance against Vicente Luque to put himself back into title contention at 170 pounds.
The 36-year-old was coming into his bout against Luque following back-to-back losses against Darren Till and Anthony Pettis, the latter handing “Wonderboy” his first ever stoppage loss.
UFC 244 was headlined by a pair of fellow 170 pounders, Jorge Masvidal and Nate Diaz, who fought for the ‘BMF” title. That fight ended prematurely as the doctor deemed a cut Diaz suffered above his right eye was too significant for him to continue and instructed referee Dan Miragliotta to stop the fight.
Thompson said he was disappointed by how that fight ended, but would like to fight the winner in the future, labelling the fight as the nice guy vs. the bad guy.
“I see myself working up the rankings and I figured; I was kind of disappointed the fight, the main event, ended the way it did because I really wanted to fight one of those guys,” Thompson said at the post-fight press conference (via MMA Junkie). “It would have been awesome; nicest guy vs. the baddest guy. It would have been really cool. But we’ll see.
“I would have loved to have fought the guys. Whoever won it tonight. I know Masvidal did. It didn’t happen the way he wanted it to, and they’re probably going to run it back.”
Thompson admitted that due to the doctor stoppage the pair would most likely run it back, but praised Masvidal for how much his game has improved over the years.
“He looked better than ever, man, for sure,” Thompson said. “(He’s) definitely a different fighter from when I fought him last. His striking looked good. Very unpredictable. That head kick in the first round was sick. I’ve got to give him props for that because I love to kick people in the head, as well. But I thought it was great. I mean Nate Diaz, he didn’t have an answer. He tried to come back with some stuff, but I can just tell: Masvidal crushed him. After that first round, he didn’t want any more. I’m pretty sure he wanted out of there, but hat’s off to Masvidal. (He) definitely deserved it, and like I was telling everybody before, that’s my inspiration, bro.”