Luiz Dutra needed 30 hours to return to Brazil from Singapore, and he used the long flight back home to reflect on his actions during in his UFC debut.
In less than three minutes of fight with Kiichi Kunimoto at UFC Fight Night 34, "Besouro" was disqualified after connecting several illegal elbows to the back of his opponent’s head. According to Dutra, he didn’t realize the elbows were hitting the back of Kunimoto’s head.
"At the heat of the moment, I didn’t see that I was landing illegal blows in my opponent," Dutra wrote in an open letter sent to the media on Thursday. "I saw the replay and realized that I did actually hit him with elbows to the back of the head, though.
"I was very sad with the loss, and even worse to see that some people think that I did it on purpose. I’ve raised three kids and worked hard for 15 years to be in the UFC, and I wouldn't ever hurt a fighter."
While he wishes Kunimoto a speedy recovery, Dutra hopes for another chance to fight him inside the Octagon.
"I hope they give me another chance inside the Octagon to make my Brazilian fans happy," he said. "If (my next fight) happens in Brazil, again with Kunimoto, I would be really happy. I just want to show the world that it was as accident and that I’m the same Luiz ‘Besouro’ that you watched fighting at TUF: Brazil."
The disqualification was Dutra’s first loss since 2008, when he suffered a knee injury 40 seconds into a fight with fellow UFC fighter Paulo Thiago at Jungle Fight. Prior to that bout, Dutra’s only loss was due to a shoulder injury against Luis Brito in 2004.