Randy Brown reveals he ‘destroyed’ foot barely 1 minute into UFC 302: ‘That’s my luck’

Randy Brown really wanted to shine after earning a main card spot at UFC 302, but disaster struck before he ever really got going.

While the result still went his way with a unanimous decision victory over Elizeu Zaleski, Brown had much bigger plans in mind. He wanted to dazzle the New Jersey crowd with hopes that an impressive win earned him a top-15 ranking and step up in competition.

Instead, Brown ended up winning despite suffering a debilitating injury left him essentially fighting with one hand and one leg for the majority of the three-round affair.

“Unfortunately, I wanted to go out there and get him out of there, but obviously easier said than done,” Brown said Monday on The MMA Hour. “Tough vet. Of course, I break my foot about 1:10 [into the fight] and that just automatically kills all my weapons on the right side. No right hand. No back leg. I’ve got to beat him with one hand. Less movement. We made the adjustments and did what we have to do.

“So I’m not happy because I wanted a finish, I should have finished him, but it’s all good, we move forward.”

Brown said replays showed the exact moment his foot got shattered after throwing a kick that bounced off Zaleski’s elbow. He masked the injury during the fight, although he told his coach between rounds and they made the necessary adjustments moving forward.

“Watch the fight and put it at 3:50 of the first round,” Brown explained. “I throw a kick, a front kick that hit his elbow, and you hear it goes ‘pop!’ Destroyed my foot. I go from 100 to 50 and I’m fighting with one hand the whole time, because I can’t twist or nothing. The one time I did try to twist, I almost fell, and then I just had to stay on the one hand. But the caliber of fighter [I am], we make adjustments and we see it through.

“[When it happened,] I was just like, f*ck. In my head I was like, ‘Of course. That’s my luck. That’s Randy Brown luck right there.’”

Despite fighting with one foot for the majority of the bout, Brown still got the job done, putting himself on a three-fight UFC win streak.

As disappointed as he was with the performance, he can’t walk away totally dissatisfied with the result because things could’ve gone much worse for him given the circumstances.

“That’s what we do,” Brown said. “What can I say? That’s what we do. I can’t be happy. I’m happy, of course, I should celebrate the little things. I said that leading up to the fight. The press is always asking me that, ‘Bro, are you happy? Are you proud?’ Yeah, I am, but the work is not done. I’ve got so much more to do.

“That [win] was massive. That’s up there for me. Just based purely off the adversity, a broken foot, him having my back for a full three minutes and being able to come out of that and attempting to show him how it’s done. All of that. It’s up there. I rank it up there with some of my best performances. I know I could have been better. I’m telling you all, I was in top form but the adversity made it good. The fact that I showed I could get out of that and still make those adjustments as a [high] caliber fighter.”

Brown left the arena on Saturday with a walking boot on his foot and he expects to meet with doctors this week to see the extent of the damage. He’s hoping the injury only requires some rest to allow his foot to heal rather than being forced to go under the knife.

“Fingers crossed that it’s not surgery,” Brown said. “I want to keep this going, so I’ve got to get back in there. Fingers crossed that it’s not surgery, but we’ll see what happens.”

If all goes well and he recovers in time, Brown wants his return to happen in November when the UFC is expected to hold a card at Madison Square Garden in New York.

That’d give him a chance to fight close to home again as a New York-based athlete, and he’d love a shot at a ranked opponent. Following his win, Brown already had a name in mind for his next fight, however he’s not married to any one idea but rather anyone who allows him to progress in his career and move up those UFC welterweight rankings.

“Nothing’s malicious for me, this is all business,” Brown said. “I’m just making the moves that I need to make for me and mine. I feel like, yeah, he’s in a perfect position, everyone else is booked — me and Geoff Neal or even ‘Wonderboy’ [Stephen Thompson].

“‘Wonderboy,’ Geoff Neal, these are good matchups. These are guys where I believe styles make fights and I think that I have a tremendous style to beat these dudes and take their spots. So I’m coming for whoever I can get.”

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