Ange Loosa asserts vision was impaired at UFC Fight Night 239, hopes for closure with Bryan Battle rematch

Ange Loosa admits he woke up Sunday feeling “down,” but he isn’t second-guessing how he maneuvered through an unfortunate situation.

His UFC Fight Night 239 co-main event Saturday ended in a no contest due to an eye poke – a disappointing result, Loosa (10-3 MMA, 2-1 UFC) acknowledges. However, Loosa also asserts he couldn’t see properly.

The circumstances of the fight’s ending led to a heated exchange with opponent Bryan Battle, who accused Loosa of looking for a way out of their fight in Las Vegas. The two fighters were separated by security before anything physical occurred.

Despite the emotional aftermath, Loosa is confident in his decision hours later. He told MMA Junkie on Sunday the eye issues have persisted, and he will visit a specialist once he gets back home.

“That’s hard to take,” Loosa said. “I’m very disappointed. My eye is still hurting. This is not the way I wanted this fight to end up. That’s it. I don’t have much to say. I’m very disappointed. Yeah, that’s the way it ended up.”

“… (The UFC) wants to send me to an ophthalmologist. I have to see another one back in Florida. We will check and see what’s going on, but I feel like there’s something inside (my eye). It’s itchy and hurting a little bit. We’ll check the eye and see how it goes from there.”

Loosa did not have the chance to speak with reporters backstage at the UFC Apex following the event, as he was being medically tended to. Battle (11-2 MMA, 5-1 UFC), however, got much off his chest at a post-fight news conference.

Loosa doesn’t deny Battle was winning the fight up until the end. But to call Loosa a quitter? Loosa says he’s anything but.

“To be honest, he started to fight well,” Loosa said. “I cannot take that from him. He fought well in the first round. He definitely won the first round. But I’m not afraid of him. I started slow. In the second round, I was ready to go. I would never, ever, ever stop the fight if I’m able to continue. I wasn’t able to see. The only thing I’m disappointed about me is to lose my cool. For all the people who know me, I’m always respectful and I never curse like that. But calling me the way he called me after the fight was just so disrespectful and I had to react. I just think that’s not the way things should go in mixed martial arts.”

Battle wasn’t the only one to hurl insults at Loosa. The unfriendly messages have flocked in on social media. Loosa said the negativity doesn’t bother him, but he wishes people understood what it feels like to fight with one properly working eye.

“The thing I see is that there’s a lot of people online coming after me, saying like, ‘Oh, you quit, you quit, you quit.’ But those people, most of them, 99 percent of them never fought,” Loosa said. “They don’t know how I felt. That’s what makes me feel like I’m fine. I’m OK. I’ll be back from that. I don’t take all this negativity. I have good people around me and I know what I’m worth. It’s OK. I’m down today, but I’ll be back stronger.”

While Battle indicated a rematch isn’t at the top of his list, Loosa wants to put closure on the situation and hopes the UFC circles back.

“The only way to fix that is to run it back,” Loosa said. “… He didn’t win the fight. He didn’t lose the fight. Like I said, this is unfortunate. This is not the way I wanted this fight to end up. Yeah, if I was able to fight back, I’d fight back for sure. I wasn’t expecting to have the fight stop like that. I thought I’d maybe have more time, to be honest. But my eye was really damaged. If they give me the opportunity to fight him again, for sure I’m going to take it.”

For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC Fight Night 239.

Story originally appeared on MMA Junkie