Ketlen Vieira repeatedly apologised to UFC legend Miesha Tate after leaving her with a bloody face and swollen eyes during their fight at UFC Vegas 43.
The two fighters were headlining the event at UFC APEX in Las Vegas, with Tate continuing her comeback to MMA.
The 35-year-old retired from the sport in 2016, but announced she would return to the ring in March. She then beat fellow American Marion Reneau in her first fight in five years in July.
Tate’s revival hit a bump on Saturday, however, when she was beaten by Vieira by unanimous decision.
Vieira was dominant in the women’s bantamweight clash, landing a number of brutal punches to leave Tate with a bloody face and swollen left eye.
Once Vieira had been announced as the winner, the Brazilian was quick to embrace her opponent. Footage has now revealed she repeatedly apologised to Tate, telling her she was “sorry” on more than one occasion.
Tate was heard telling Vieira “it’s okay” while she held a towel to the injuries on her face.
Despite being taken to hospital after the encounter, Tate said she “had fun” during her fight with Vieira.
“That’s the number one priority,” she said. “I thought it was really close. I wasn’t sure [I had won], to be honest. I knew there was a possibility she won. Hat’s off to her. She’s great.”
“I had a great time tonight. What else can I say. I’ll go home and kiss my two kids. Life is great.”
Vieira was also full of praise for her opponent, who she branded a “legend”.
“I’ve always dreamed about being in a main event against a legend,” she said.
“To be able to live that moment and get a victory, I don’t have words to express.”
Tate was considered one of the greatest MMA fighters around before her retirement in 2016, but she lost her women’s bantamweight title in a first-round submission defeat to Amanda Nunes at UFC 200 in the months beforehand.
After returning to the ring, Tate had hoped to set up a women’s bantamweight title shot with Nunes, but this may have become more unlikely after she was defeated by Vieira.