After suffering the first two losses of his career back to back in 2020, Dominick Reyes is back.
The no. 3 ranked UFC light heavyweight contender makes his return Saturday in the main event of UFC Vegas 25 against no. 5 ranked light heavyweight Jiri Prochazka.
Reyes’ first loss in 2020 was a unanimous decision loss against no. 1 ranked pound-for-pound fighter Jon Jones for the light heavyweight championship at UFC 247 in what many believed should have been a victory for Reyes.
Reyes then had another opportunity at the belt, fighting Jan Blachowicz for the title after Jones vacated the belt at UFC 253.
Reyes’ first fight with Jon Jones not only provided him with credibility to casual fans and the general public, but it also cast a spotlight on him because so many people believed he won in his fight against Jones.
That spotlight compounded with a knockout loss to Blachowicz months later put Reyes in a foreign and unfamiliar mindset. But the time Reyes took to get back to a more familiar mindset was the best thing that could have happened for his career.
“It was a lot of soul searching, a lot of examining my camp. Examining myself. Examining my mindset, and yeah. It sucked, but it was a blessing in disguise because I was able to get back to what makes me, me,” Reyes said. “I was able to get excited again about fighting, and enjoying the whole process of everything.”
Reyes also relished in the fact that he was no longer in that aforementioned spotlight.
“It’s been a lot of training in the dark. Training with not a lot of eyes on me. Everybody kind of wrote me off after the last one, so it’s good,” Reyes said. “I’m able to go back to working in the bunker and building these bombs back up.”
With time off to reflect and reset, Reyes is ready for war in Saturday night’s main event on UFC Vegas 25.