UFC Atlantic City: Dennis Buzukja Believes He Almost Manifested MSG Loss

Atlantic City, NJ — Featherweight Dennis Buzukja is looking to stave off a possible 0-3 slump when he takes on Connor Matthews at UFC Atlantic City this Saturday.

A Contender Series alum who trains alongside the likes of Aljamain Sterling and Merab Dvalishvili, Buzukja (11-4) has dropped his first two UFC scraps, to Sean Woodson and Jamall Emmers.

The Emmers fight was a knockout loss; worse, it came at UFC 295 at Madison Square Garden. The big hometown fight Buzukja had always dreamt of.

“Always in my career, I’ve always told myself since the beginning, this is a possibility, I could get finished or knocked out,” Buzukja told Cageside Press in an exclusive interview during UFC Atlantic City’s Fight Week, asked about how he handled the loss. “And just [to] have short term memory.”

“My biggest fear was what happened,” he contonued. “And I kept that in my head for months, and for years, building it up, fighting at MSG and ‘God forbid this happens.’ And I feel like I almost manifested it in the wrong way, and that’s what happened. And now that it did happen, I feel free.”

Fighting near home again on Saturday in Atlantic City, where he won the Ring of Combat featherweight title, Buzukja added that “I feel like I have nothing to lose, and I can just go be my true self now.”

When it comes to opponent Connor Matthews, a fellow Contender Series alum as well as a military vet, Buzukja allowed that “I respect him as a person, but this Saturday night, my skills are going to pay the bills. I have more experience, and just where I’m at, the way I’ve been training, I just feel like a completely different person, better than ever.”

“The Dennis that I’ve seen in myself, you know that little movie you have in your head? I’ve been seeing it in the training, and Aljo and the guys have been seeing it in training,” he added. “I say and they all say this is the best I’ve ever looked in the gym.”

“I haven’t been this excited to fight in a long time.”

Watch our full interview with UFC Atlantic City’s Dennis Buzukja above.