After his humbling defeat to Edson Barboza at UFC 197 on Saturday, Anthony ‘Showtime’ Pettis has now suffered three successive losses and may not appear in the octagon again soon.
While it might seem like a generation ago to some, it was only in 2015 that Pettis lost his lightweight title to Rafael dos Anjos at UFC 185.
Back then, Pettis was a feared fighter known for his creativity in the cage and his fierce competitive streak. Endorsed by Reebok and Wheaties, Pettis was tipped to become one of the UFC’s best pound-for-pound fighters in the years that followed.
That has not happened though. After losing his title to Dos Anjos, Pettis faced Eddie Alvarez at UFC Fight Night 81. He lost that bout by split decision.
Prior to Saturday evening, Pettis had never lost two consecutive fights, let alone three. However, Barboza’s assault of Pettis’ thigh and body left the judges with little choice but to award the fight to the latter.
Congrats @EdsonBarbozaJR honor to share the octagon with you! Shed my tears and back to the grind… This is all I know. Thx to my team!!!
— Anthony Pettis (@Showtimepettis) April 24, 2016
And so Pettis currently finds himself teetering on the edge of UFC obscurity, a thought that would have been inconceivable 24 months ago.
In the build-up to UFC 197, Pettis took the opportunity to call-out Nate Diaz for a fight.
“Me and Nate Diaz, we really don’t get along. That’s going to be a fight that when it happens there’s going to be some trash talk,” Pettis told Sportsnet.
With Diaz’s new-found fame in the UFC and Pettis’ current form, that match-up seems highly unlikely.
While Pettis might want to consider a full-time camp change from his longtime Roufusport to update his skill-set, it would also surely be advisable for him to choose his next opponent wisely – a few Stockton slaps and another defeat might spell the end for Showtime.