GEJE Eustaquio was perplexed at the conclusion of ONE: Hero's Ascent after losing his flyweight title to Adriano Moraes on Friday.
"In my mind, I thought I'm winning the fight," said the deposed titlist after falling via unanimous decision to his Brazilian rival to end their epic trilogy.
Eustaquio, though, says he accepts the outcome and hopes to come out better from this experience.
"I respect the decision of the judges and I have to take it positively to become a better fighter," he said.
It was easily one of Eustaquio's best performances, showing tremendous poise with his striking abilities, as well as improved ground defense.
He found some trouble in the fourth round, where Moraes locked his left leg behind his head on what he called the "Mikinho kneebar."
Yet through it all, Eustaquio was unfazed as he said that he was ready for everything his foe threw.
"That's a deep kneebar. But I'm waiting for Adriano to take off my knee and bring it," he said.
Eustaquio says there's no sense crying over spilled milk.
"Life is full of ups and downs. Tonight is not my night, it's Adriano's night. But the road doesn't end there," he said. "I've been through it before. It's time to get back to the drawing board. It hurts, but we're the people of the mountains and there's no mountain we can't conquer."