Barboza’s coach says eye poke changed course of fight with Justin Gaethje

Justin Gaethje defeated Edson Barboza in the main event of Saturday night’s UFC Philadelphia, but the Brazilian’s team isn’t happy that an eye poke might have affected the outcome.

Barboza was poked in the right eye 42 seconds into the main event bout, almost two minutes before Gaethje dropped and finished the Nova Friburgo native with a heavy right hand.

On his Instagram page, Barboza’s manager Alex Davis posted a picture of the eye poke, adding “no excuses but this dictated the fight.”

Barboza’s longtime coach Anderson Franca also wrote about it on social media, adding a photo of Barboza’s eye post-fight.

“I really think this fight could have been one of the best fights of the year, Justin Gaethje is an excellent fighter and is definitely among the best in the world,” Franca wrote in Portuguese. “We have much respect for him and his team. I don’t know if the result would have been different or not, but we believe the fight would have been longer if not for this incident.”


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