Speaking with MMA Junkie following the event, the American Kickboxing Academy member refused to blame the loss on "The Phenom's" testosterone replacement therapy usage.
"TRT had nothing to do with that kick," Rockhold said. "I lost to one of the best guys in the world, and it was something pretty spectacular," Rockhold said. "I don't know what to really think about anything right now. I just want to get back and fight and beat someone up. That's what I'm focused on. Good job by Vitor. What can I say?"
The victory improved Belfort's record at middleweight to 5-1, including back-to-back headkick knockouts over Rockhold, a former Strikeforce champ, and perennial contender Michael Bisping.
His only loss at 185-pounds came against long-reigning titleholder Anderson Silva at UFC 126 in February 2011, where Belfort suffered a devastating headkick knockout of his own.
Despite being ranked second in the UFC's official list of top 10 middleweights, Belfort may never receive another title shot due to the controversy surrounding his TRT use.
As Nevada State Athletic Commission Executive Director Keith Kizer told Bleacher Report in March, it is unlikely that Belfort would get licensed in the states due to failing a post-fight drug test for steroids in 2006 (via MMA Weekly).
Leading up to the fight, Rockhold was anything but complimentary of his Brazilian counterpart, saying that his TRT exemption is a loophole used to cheat the system (via ESPN).
The loss snaps a nine-fight win streak for Rockhold, who also indicated that he would like to have a quick turnaround for his next fight.
Should Chris Weidman pull off a major upset and defeat Silva at UFC 162 this July, Belfort would clearly be the front runner for the next shot at the middleweight strap.
However, if Silva notches yet another successful title defense, Belfort will likely need to win at least one more fight before he is seriously considered for another championship bout.
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