Jiri Prochazka made a statement in his UFC debut but he believes he made too many mistakes.
Prochazka entered his UFC debut on July 11 with some hype, at least among hardcore fans. The former RIZIN light heavyweight champion shared the Octagon with Volkan Oezdemir. Prochazka knocked Oezdemir out cold in the second round.
Jiri Prochazka Talks UFC Debut, Working On Mistakes
During his media scrum backstage at UFC 251, Prochazka was asked about his successful UFC debut against Oezdemir. Here’s what he told reporters while assessing his performance (h/t MMAJunkie).
“Nothing surprised me, but I made many mistakes. I didn’t put enough focus on his punches. I was too focused on my punches and to knock him out. I was not focused on his attacks. The low kick and then the high kick from the same leg was important. I saw him (wobble), so I knocked him out.”
Prochazka noted that his ultimate goal is to become the UFC light heavyweight champion. In the meantime, he’s willing to face anyone the UFC throws at him. The former RIZIN 205-pound ruler said as long as he’s able to showcase his craft, he’s in a good spot.
After the fight with Oezdemir, Prochazka admitted that he expected more wrestling from his opponent. He also said he understands the significance of winning in his UFC debut against a former title challenger and seventh-ranked light heavyweight. Prochazka is sure to shoot up the rankings once they are updated.
Many have noted that Prochazka’s hands were far too low against someone as dangerous as Oezdemir. As mentioned above, Prochazka seems well aware that he left himself open to attacks more than he would’ve liked. Still, one can’t deny the dangers that Prochazka presents to the UFC’s light heavyweight division. Time will tell if he can put it all together to make a run at the UFC title but he’s off to a good start.