On Saturday, Hermansson faced Curtis in the co-main event of UFC London and won a unanimous decision victory where he moved around Curtis and picked him off with kicks and long-range punches. After the final horn sounded, Hermansson and Curtis got into a minor altercation, exchanging words in the center of the cage with Curtis flipping Hermansson off. In his post-fight interview, Hermansson explained that adrenaline got the better of him in the moment causing him to say something, and later speaking with reporters backstage, “The Joker” apologized for the incident, saying he hopes to have a chance to speak with Curtis about it soon.
“I can’t remember [what was said] but he was, like, taunting me, then something slipped from my tongue,” Hermansson explained. “I’m a little bit disappointed with myself that I got caught up in that because I’m all about sportsmanship. I want the sport to be clean and after a fight we should be good friends. So I really apologize to Chris Curtis for that...
“I haven’t [spoken to him yet], unfortunately. I would love to square up and again, I apologize so much for my bad behavior.”
It takes two to make an accident though and while Hermansson may have set the incident off, Curtis admitted afterwards that he played a part and intended to bury the hatchet with Hermansson.
I'll try to catch him tonight. I was out of pocket and it takes a few to calm down once I'm worked up. But yeah— Chris Curtis The Action Man (@Actionman513) July 23, 2022
The win was Hermansson’s first since dropping a split decision to Curtis’ teammate Sean Strickland earlier this year, and keeps him in the middleweight title mix. Emerging from this bout relatively unscathed, Hermansson — holding strong at No. 12 in MMA Fighting’s Global Rankings — is targeting a return for the UFC’s rumored return to Sweden in November.
“I would love to be on that card and I want to fight somebody in the rankings for my next one. Continue to climb towards that big goal,” Hermansson said. “I would love to fight somebody that I haven’t fought. I’ve fought a lot of guys inside the rankings already. So somebody I haven’t fought. We’ve got Paulo Costa, we have Robert Whittaker, two names I haven’t fought.”
Of course there’s another ranked middleweight Hermansson hasn’t fought that could be an even more obvious choice: Darren Till. Hermansson was originally supposed to face Till at UFC London until Till withdrew from the bout due to injury. It’s the second time Till has been forced out of a fight with Hermansson, and if Till is ready to go by November, Hermansson is willing to give it another shot.
“Of course the fight interests me,” Hermansson said. “It’s a great fight and I think Darren is a great opponent. He has a lot of fans. He’s a fan favorite, but it’s a little bit scary to book up against him a third time. But third time’s the charm, so maybe.”