Edson Barboza team insists ‘no excuses’ for Justin Gaethje loss, blames eye poke anyway

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UFC lightweight contender Edson Barboza was laid out by Justin Gaethje in the UFC Philadelphia main event last weekend on ESPN, thanks to a first-round knockout that left the Brazilian looking up at the lights.

Watch the replay here.

While Barboza’s manager, Alex Davis, insists there are “no excuses” for joining the “Highlight” reel, he did make sure to let his Instagram followers know that Gaethje landed an eye poke during the bout, one that “dictated the fight.”

“We have much respect for [Gaethje] and his team,” coach Anderson Franca added on social media (via MMA Fighting). “I don’t know if the result would have been different or not, but we believe the fight would have been longer if not for this incident.”

Barboza (20-7) dropped to No. 8 in the official rankings and is going to need to string together a couple of big performances if the 33 year-old Brazilian hopes to get back into the 155-pound title hunt. Fortunately, time is still on his side.

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