Joao Zeferino won at PFL 6 and with the action leading up to the submission that won him the fight it did not seem like anything was wrong. Little did fans know, he was not fighting at his full potential in Atlantic City, New Jersey Thursday night.
Zeferino took it Yuri Villefort for three rounds and finished him with a rear naked choke to secure the win and the points to advance to the playoffs. Afterward, Zeferino confessed that he did not feel completely healthy going into his fight in Ovation Hall.
“Sick since Monday night,” Zeferino said to the media. He said after his first workout things went downhill after a few hours when he took some time to rest. While the fever he said he had may have helped with his weight cut, it took its toll coming into the fight. However, Zeferino did not say anything to anyone outside of his manager as he believes perseverance to move forward is what makes a champion.
“Wasn’t feeling sharp tonight, but I was able to overcome.” –Joao Zeferino
“Once I got the choke, I saw it was deep,” Zeferino added about how he was able to pull through and win the fight. He commended his opponent who ate some hard right hands throughout the bout and was not using the illness as an excuse. He said Villefort was a tough and game opponent, but he was not as sharp as he usually is when he fights.
This time of year in New Jersey as the summer comes to a close tends to be more hot and humid than folks are used to. Zeferino could have had an allergic reaction to the odd weather in the area but it could be something that only affected him in the days leading up to PFL 6 fans will never know.
Either way, if that is how he fights when he is feeling ill imagine how well he will do when he is healthy.
Do you think Zeferino is a favorite to win in his division?