That decision made him fearless. A crowd-rousing walkout made him a local favorite. And his eventual victory made him nothing short of a legend, UFC president Dana White told MMAjunkie.com.
"It's the way these guys are," White said. "I was sitting next to (Pittsburgh Steelers head coach) Mike Tomlin tonight, and one of the things he was saying was that the reason he loves the UFC so much is because we make the fights. The fights always get made.
"(Brenneman's) fight tonight was a Rocky story. He's in his hometown, and he gets the shot at the guy who's hot and on his way to a title shot. He comes in and wins it. That's the thing about this sport. You never know who's going to win."
"This whole week has been a roller coaster," Brenneman said. "When we got to weigh-ins, I was told, 'You may have to wait until 3:59, or you may not even know until tomorrow if you're fighting.' What can I do other than sit there and try to remain professional and do what I do? And, well, it worked out."
\"I think this is one of the best cards we've ever, ever done," a beaming White said.