The whole situation surrounding Alexander Gustafsson’s removal from last weekend’s UFC on Fuel TV 9 has been much maligned by many around the MMA community. The whole thing, which was dubbed a “circus” by Gustafsson himself, was a strange, overblown situation that could have ruined the UFC’s yearly trip to Sweden quite easily.
Thankfully, however, the fights delivered with some great bouts and while the main event suffered, UFC Sweden wasn’t as bad as it could have been. But that doesn’t mean that the medical committee advising the SMMAF on Gustafsson’s status made the right decision.
With photos surfacing before the fight that made it look like Gustafsson was already nearly healed up from the cut, which only required 3 stitches, a lot of people other than Dana White felt the decision made was a hasty one. And apparently the SMMAF agrees. SMMAF President George Sallfeldt told Telegraph Sport that the decision is under review:
“We will be looking into the situation that happened, and the way it happened. We’ll be asking the medical committee how they arrived at their decision [on the Tuesday night] and why it was made when it was.”
“It someone contacts the federation it is difficult to do anything different to what happened. But I have to say that this situation has never happened before.”
Perhaps Gustafsson could have fought had he not informed the commission of his injury before last Friday’s weigh-ins and subsequent medical check. He also could have injured himself further had he fought. Indeed the timing made on the decision was strange and perhaps a bit hasty.
Either way, the medical committee that had the final say on Gustafsson chose to err on the side of caution. Dana White put it simply:
“I don’t want to come out and bash these guys, but they did a horrible job of this. We know Sweden has great fans, and we really like this market, but it really wasn’t good what happened.”
The main event that took place, featuring Gegard MoUSAsi outdueling Ilir Latifi in a lackluster decision, would have most likely been much different with Gustafsson in place. The damage has been done, but hopefully the SMMAF will look to remedy any future situations similar to this as a relatively young regulating board.