Mark Hunt Absorbed A Record-Setting Loss Last Night, But He Didn’t Have...

Mark Hunt Absorbed A Record-Setting Loss Last Night, But He Didn’t Have To


Today (Sun., May 10, 2015) the mixed martial arts (MMA) landscape is firmly entrenched in the discussion of the incredibly late stoppage in the main event of last night’s UFC Fight Night 65 from Australia, where Stipe Miocic battered veteran Mark Hunt to the point where ‘The Super Samoan’ was hardly recognizable afterward.

Most argued that the fight should have been stopped in the third round with Miocic pouring on a heavy torrent of strikes to no response from Hunt. They may not have been pure knockout shots he was throwing and landing, but Hunt just wasn’t intelligently defending himself.

True, he’s known for his otherworldly iron chin, but that actually could have been a bad thing last night as he absorbed an enormous amount of punishment.

In finally stopping Hunt in the fifth round of perhaps the most brutal and one-sided heavyweight fights we’ve seen since Cain Velasquez’ late demolishing of Junior dos Santos’ back at UFC 166, Miocic set the record for most total strikes landed in a UFC bout with 361.

He broke Chael Sonnen’s previously held record of 320 in his fifth round loss to all-time great former champ Anderson Silva at UFC 116, and even thought ‘The American Gangster’ tested positive for significantly elevated levels of testosterone after the bout, but somehow his record still stood.

Anyway, that’s not the point here. The situation that was created by the referee in charge and the Australian medical doctor who examined Hunt is what’s should be focused on here, as it would seem they gave ‘The Super Samoan’ far too many chances to somehow emerge from a fight he simply had no chance of winning.

Yes, he has perhaps the most powerful one-shot knockout power in all of MMA, and he could have landed that shot on Miocic if he were only given the chance to get back to his feet. But there’s a point that has to be reached when the probability of that unlikely scenario just isn’t worth letting Hunt absorb that much more damage.

It’s impossible to accuse the governing Australian athletic entities of allowing Hunt to go on longer than he should havr because he was a hometown favorite; yet we’ve seen a similar situation when Alexander Gustafsson was allowed to eat endless uppercuts from Anthony ‘Rumble’ Johnson with the full pressure of Stockholm, Sweden on his back at January’s UFC on FOX 14.

With the medical safety of fighters a hot topic in the sport right now, allowing athletes to take these kind of beatings just doesn’t make MMA look any more legitimate in the eyes of the general public. The hardcore fans will cry that Hunt is a warrior who can take the punishment. They’re wrong.

If MMA ever wants to occupy the same stratosphere of sports like football, baseball, and basketball, they’re going to have to keep these kinds of beatdowns off of the airwaves, and that means educating local athletic commissions on when it’s time to call off a fight.

Photo Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

  • Randy Lahey

    If you’re not educated in ‘common sense’ enough to know that the fight should of been stopped in the third round you certainly shouldn’t be an MMA referee.

    • Michael Drahota

      Very true Randy, very true. He just wasn’t defending himself.

  • aFriendlyAgenda

    “…as it would seem they gave ‘The Super Samoan’ far too many chances to
    somehow emerge from a fight he simply had no chance of winning.”

    Well tell that to flamderson shmilva when he whipped out the sub in the 5th.
    I agree that it was highly unlikely, but Hunt might have landed a hot one shogun/hendo 2 style.

    And I dont know why everybody is acting like an old lady, Hunts a grown man.
    He didn’t look nearly as worse for wear as Dos after Cain/Dos 2.
    He looked like he had a Black eye (and 20 pounds over weight).

  • Steve Padilla

    Mark kept defending and he was always fully conscious. The ref did his job well. It would have been his corners job to stop the fight had they thought Hunt had enough.

  • watermelon fresh

    don’t just blame the ref. Corners need to take more proactive measures to stop fights as well if their guy is badly losing taking punishment.