Every fighter will tell you that each win is extremely important, but clearly some victories are bigger than others, particularly if a championship or a pink slip is on the line. Well, heading into UFC 166 KJ Noons had dropped three straight fights, and likely would have been chopped by the UFC if he had lost to George Sotiropoulos . The 30 year-old vet went on to score his first Octagon win Saturday night, however, by earning a UD victory over the renowned grappler.
So, what would Noons have done if he had lost? While speaking to MMA Fighting.com the “King” revealed the following (transcribed by MMA Mania.com):
“It feels awesome, all this hard work. This was must-win. If I would have lost, I would have retired. If you can’t compete at the top, then why do it? It’s tough, I got the new baby. I got a job, too. Online real estate. I was doing that and training. It’s tough to do both. I can definitely build off this win for the next fight. If I’m not getting better, it’s time to hang it up.”
Noons was coming off defeats to Josh Thomson, Ryan Couture and Donald Cerrone, and although all three were by decision (and via split decision versus Couture), another defeat would have been a massive setback. Due to his striking abilities, aggressive style and name, Noons surely would have received offers from other big stage promotions, but it doesn’t sound like he would have been interested.
On the flip side, Sotiropoulos has now lost four straight fights and could be on his way out. It’s been quite the slide for the Australian fighter, as prior to this losing streak, Sotiropoulos had won seven straight in the UFC and was widely considered to be a top contender at 155.
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