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Paddy Pimblett admits Joe Rogan, Nate Diaz criticism bothered him after Jared Gordon win, is ‘game’ for rematch

SAN DIEGO – Paddy Pimblett still thinks he beat Jared Gordon in their controversial decision at UFC 282, but recognizes the fight wasn’t quite as “dominant” as he originally believed.

Pimblett (20-3 MMA, 4-0 UFC) was awarded a unanimous decision win over Gordon (19-6 MMA, 7-5 UFC) in December at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, and the fight was named MMA Junkie’s Robbery of the Year for 2022. The public outcry from fans, fighters and media lasted for weeks in the aftermath of the lightweight bout, and Pimblett was the target of all the backlash.

At the UFC 282 post-fight press conference in the immediate aftermath of the fight, Pimblett was impervious to all criticism. He told anyone who thought he lost to “suck me asshole,” and was outraged against the slightest notion the bout wasn’t scored properly.

More than two months later, Pimblett’s stance on the overall result hasn’t changed. He still thinks he won, however, as he told MMA Junkie during a recent interview at The Vitamin Shoppe in San Diego to promote his new All Baddy Everything pre-workout supplement, his defiance has softened – and he’s open to rematch.

“I still think I won,” Pimblett told MMA Junkie, “I won the first two rounds. The first round was closer than I thought on the night. I’ve watched it back. On the night I thought he only hit me with about two left hooks. I watched it back and he hit me with about six, seven. But yeah, I watched it back and I thought I won the first two rounds. I thought he won the third by just pushing me against the wall, but I think he got about two significant strikes that round all together. I ended up getting him down. So, it’s however you scored the first round. But I scored the two rounds to me.

“If everyone wants to see it again, I don’t mind beating him at the end of the year, lad. Hopefully he beats Bobby Green (on April 22), then if he wants to fight toward the back end of the year, I’m game.”

Pimblett, 28, offered a reminder that he experienced an ankle injury in the first round of the contest, but claimed “no one is talking about that.” He’s proud to have endured it to go three rounds for the first time in his UFC tenure, though, and isn’t going to apologize for thinking his work in the octagon was superior to Gordon, even if it wasn’t as one-sided as he stated directly after.

“I’ve seen people giving me stick for saying I won the fight after it, but what do you want me to do? Say, ‘Oh, I think I lost it,’” Pimblett said. “I do think I won. As I said, I’ve watched the fight back and I don’t think it was as dominant as I thought it was straight after it.

“I felt brilliant going into that last fight. My fight camp was amazing. Never had any injuries or nothing like that going into it. But then when I was in there it just didn’t click. I just didn’t feel good. I felt like sh*t. … That’s probably my worst performance of them all. I was just glad that I went three five-(minute rounds).”

Pimblett is confident that once he does return to competition, which he expects before the end of the year, he will be a better version of himself than what the world witnessed at UFC 282. Pimblett is motivated, he said, but it’s not because of the venom from fans or pundits.

According to “The Paddy,” it the people he holds in high regard who have evolved into a driving force. He wants to show he’s a better product than what he previously showed.

“I don’t care what most armchairs say to be honest, you know what I mean? That doesn’t bother me,” Pimblett said. “When pros like Nate Diaz and that say that you’re not winning, Joe Rogan says that you don’t win, that’s when you think, ‘F*cking hell.’ But people sitting on their armchair and comment on my YouTube and my Instagram, I don’t care about it. It’s actual pros who thought I lost.”

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