Saturday night, UFC heavyweight fighter Stipe Miocic lost his title to Francis Ngannou after a second-round knockout. Days later, the former champion issued a statement. He apologized to his friends, family and fans and said that he hates letting them down.
Miocic posted a black-and-white photo of him on Instagram that showed him sitting against a wall. He appeared to be exhausted. Miocic started the long caption by acknowledging that his fall after the knockout punch was not the most graceful. However, he joked that he was unconscious and that these falls happen. Miocic then shifted his tone and addressed the stunning loss on Saturday night.
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"I love you and I'm sorry. I hate letting you down," Miocic wrote in the caption of his Instagram post. "To my team, thank you. I know you feel every loss just as much as I do. We win as a family, we lose as a family. Losses aren't fun, they always sting for a while, but that's the beast of this business. You can't win them all, and it's important to understand that losing is just as much a part of sports (and life) as winning. Don't ever forget God will always put you where you're meant to be at that exact moment. You can't dwell on what you should have done better, but you can learn and improve from it and come back more prepared next time."
Miocic continued and explained how a mistake led to the knockout punch. He said that he was feeling good and that Ngannou was starting to get winded at the start of the second round. Miocic said that he rushed in "unprotected" and was not in a good position to take the punch.
"That was my error that I accept, it won't happen again," Miocic added. "Lastly, I'd like to congratulate [Francis Ngannou] and his team on a well-earned victory. Saturday night was your night, enjoy your victory! For now, I'm going to enjoy the downtime, spend some time with my family, and welcome our son into the world this summer... stay tuned, God bless."
Following the loss to Ngannou, there are questions about Miocic's future in the UFC. He is 39 years old and has enjoyed a long and successful career. He is 20-4 overall, a record that includes Miocic going 8-2 in his last 10 fights. Whether he walks away from the sport remains a mystery, but Miocic will forever be known as one of the UFC's greatest heavyweight fighters.