Anthony Johnson was far from pleased with how his return to mixed martial arts unfolded.
"Rumble" knocked out Jose Augusto in the second round of the Bellator 258 co-main event Friday, but he nearly suffered a shocking loss in the opening frame when Augusto dropped him with a combination. The move essentially marked Johnson's first time being badly hurt in a fight, and he was upset he let himself get caught.
"(I'm) pissed," Johnson said at the postfight press conference. "He hit me. I don't mind getting hit. But I got hit and I dropped. I mean, what the hell? That ain't me. That was a piss-poor performance on my part. I'm better than that. I know I'm better than that. You guys know I'm better than that.
"He caught me slipping," Johnson continued. "He got in on me. That was all on me, and I'm pissed at myself that he hit me. ... That was a dumbass performance."
The 37-year-old returned to the sport after a four-year retirement, and he earned a Bellator title shot against Vadim Nemkov in his debut with the promotion.
Johnson was unable to pinpoint a specific mistake he made against Augusto, replying with "everything" when asked what he thought led to the adversity in Round 1.
"I know I didn't look my best," Johnson said. "I'm not going to say it was ring rust. I'm not going to say I was overconfident or cocky. I knew the man was going to come and bring it.
"That's just me slipping, man. I shouldn't have (done) that. I put myself in danger with that one, and I barely ever put myself in danger, even in practice."