UFC Atlantic City: Jacob Malkoun Address Odd Ending to Petroski Bout

Atlantic City, NJ — On a night filled with controversy and strangeness, Jacob Malkoun and opponent Andre Petroski helped get the weird going at UFC Atlantic City.

The middleweight preliminary card fight ended suddenly in the second round, when Petroski appeared to rock himself crashing in on a takedown attempt. Just what caused Petroski to drop to his knees and cover up less than a minute into the round wasn’t quite clear, even on replays, though the best guess is his skull bouncing off Malkoun’s hip.

“I think when he went for the shot, I thrust my hips in, big cross-face. Maybe that hurt him, I think. I don’t know to be honest,” Malkoun (8-3) said following the fight. “But I just felt the reaction, sprawled cross-face like I do in training, I think with a little bit more intent, bit of a hammer fist maybe. And I saw him get rocked and I just, I dunno, I saw a wounded guy on the ground, just wanted to kick him.”

Speaking with media outlets including Cageside Press backstage at the Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, Australia’s Malkoun added that “I think I hurt him with that big cross-face to be honest. I turned down, I saw him wobbly, and I’m like, I hit him with something hard, you know? I’m a strong dude, I’m very strong. I don’t look that strong, I don’t have the physique that he does but like I said I’ve got the farmer strength, even though I’m not a farmer.”

The opening minutes of the fight, before the rather sudden ending, were quite competitive. That’s the kind of encounter Jacob Malkoun prefers.

“I relish those dog fights. Always early, the first round, everyone’s strong, everyone’s big, everyone’s physical. But as the fight goes on, that’s when I thrive— when I’m uncomfortable.”

On the subject of what comes next, Malkoun wants to “to keep climbing that ladder. Skill wise, I’m on a different level, I’m top 10. So I’ve just got to keep working, getting comfortable with that uncomfortable octagon.”

A date in Perth, where the UFC will return in August, is a potential landing spot for the Australian, who has yet to fight at home under the UFC banner.

“Yeah of course, it’s a good timeline for me. I’ve just got to go back, speak to the coaches, see what they say. But it’s a good timeline,” said Malkoun, who added that he’ll be “looking to smash another guy.”

Watch the full UFC Atlantic City post-fight press conference with Jacob Malkoun above.