At UFC: 167 “St. Pierre vs. Hendricks”, Josh Koscheck suffered a knockout loss to Tyron Woodley at 4:38 of the first round. Unfortunately for Koscheck, this defeat served as his third consecutive loss in the UFC, two of which have been knockout losses. Is it time for the TUF Season 1 competitor to hang it up?
While Koscheck may be on a three-fight losing streak, he has been in there with extremely tough competition. Koscheck’s losing streak began at UFC on Fox: “Diaz vs. Miller”, where Kos dropped a close and contested split decision to current number one welterweight contender Johny Hendricks. Koscheck came into his next fight a favorite against Robbie Lawler at UFC 157, but was knocked out by “Ruthless” in the first round with some savage punches. That brings us to Koscheck’s most recent fight at UFC 167 against Woodley.
This fight was unique because Koscheck simply looked outmatched in every aspect of the fight. Woodley came out of the gate and took control with some crisp boxing, landing a brutal overhand right to take charge. Koscheck changed levels and pinned Woodley against the cage without any real purpose, and was separated seconds later by the referee. Woodley really began headhunting and managed to nail Koschek with a brutal right hand to the temple, sending the former welterweight title challenger down to the mat.
Koscheck has had an incredible MMA career thus far, with wins over UFC Hall of Famer Matt Hughes, Anthony Johnson, Chris Lytle and Diego Sanchez. Stylistically, he is a tough fight for any welterweight. He is an NCAA Division I champion and is notorious for his grinding wrestling and top control (just ask Paul Daley). He also possesses a cannon for a right hand and has scored brutal knockouts over Yoshiyuki Yoshida, Frank Trigg and Matt Hughes. At 35, Koscheck still has some mileage left in him, and his well roundedness can still make him a competitive fighter in the division.
That being said, he definitely needs a demotion in the quality of opponent he is to face next. A fight against Adlan Amagov would be interesting as it would be a clash of new school vs. old school. Koscheck could prove a stiff test for Amagov and determine whether the young Russian can emerge a title challenger in the primarily wrestling-dominated division. Another interesting fight for Koscheck could be the loser of the upcoming Bahadurzada vs. Howard match-up at UFC 168. Both Bahadurzada and Howard are veterans and solid fighters, but neither fighter is really gunning for a title shot right now.
So is it the end of the road for Koscheck? Since he can likely still find a “W” in the Octagon, hopefully not.