Derek Brunson doesn’t believe he’s getting enough respect in the middleweight division.
Brunson took on the previously unbeaten Edmen Shahbazyan in the main event of UFC on ESPN+ 31 on Aug. 1. The action was held inside the UFC APEX in Las Vegas, Nevada. While many expected this to be a coming out party for Shahbazyan, Brunson ended up scoring a third-round TKO victory.
Derek Brunson Says He Isn’t Getting Respect
Brunson spoke to reporters following UFC on ESPN+ 31 during the post-fight presser. He made it clear he doesn’t believe he’s getting the respect he feels he is owed (via MMAJunkie).
“I’m not given enough respect in this division,” Brunson said. “I’m OK with earning it. There have been fights where I’ve had the flu. I went to the doctor to nurse myself back to health – and five days later to fight. … We had a hurricane in North Carolina, and I was home with the family, making sure everything was OK. I had to fight 10 days after that when I wasn’t training for two weeks.
“Nobody cares about those excuses. But whenever I have a fight, yes, I want to prepare properly and get a full camp in with the guys down there with Henri Hooft and Sanford MMA to get me ready for these big fights.”
Going into the bout with Shahbazyan, Brunson was the number eight-ranked UFC middleweight. He’s likely to keep his spot or move up with his win over Shahbazyan. Brunson is now riding a three-fight winning streak.
Brunson hasn’t suffered a loss since being stopped by current UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya back in Nov. 2018. Since then, he’s earned victories over Shahbazyan, Elias Theodorou, and Ian Heinisch.