Las Vegas, Nevada — Welcome to the UFC, Uros Medic.
The highly anticipated debut of Contender Series alum Medic (7-0) did not disappoint at UFC 259. “The Doctor” was explosive, lightening quick, and simply steamrolled opponent Aalon Cruz in preliminary card action.
“I wasn’t expecting that. I thought he was going to start off slower. I thought he had that game plan prepared where he was going to take things easy,” he said following the fight, speaking to media outlets including Cageside Press backstage at the UFC Apex. Medic explained that he had expected Aalon Cruz to try to take him to the ground, “which he eventually tried, but that wasn’t very successful.”
“I kind of saw him trying to strike with me and after that didn’t work out, I expected him to shoot,” he continued. “I was strong, defended the takedowns, capitalized, and finished the fight. I wouldn’t say it was too hard or too crazy. I’m happy with the performance.”
The only drawback from the Performance Bonus-winning affair was what many saw as a late stoppage by referee Marc Smith. Not that Medic is to blame for that — he was simply doing his job, continuing to batter Cruz until the ref intervened. Unfortunately for Cruz, the ref was easily a minute late when he finally called off the fight.
Medic agreed that the end came later than it should have. “Yes, yeah. I think it was a late stoppage. I feel bad for Cruz,” he stated. The rule of thumb is that a fighter needs to be intelligently defending himself; that wasn’t the case as the fight wore on. “I saw him taking the damage, and he wasn’t defending himself properly, because a lot of it was landing. He was bleeding a little bit. I thought it could have been stopped sooner.”
While Cruz’s corner had called out that Medic was gassing out, Medic disputed that notion. “My tempo was slowing down, but I wasn’t gassing out. I was prepared for this fight, I had a full camp. I could have kept that momentum going. I hope he’s okay, I hope nothing bad happens. I don’t think it was too crazy, but it definitely could have been stopped a little bit sooner just so he can get back in the game a little bit sooner.”
Although, Medic added, “that’s the fight game. Nobody forces us to do this.”
Watch the full UFC 259 post-fight press conference with Uros Medic above.