Derrick Lewis backs Israel Adesanya, calls for Steve ‘Maserati’ to return to UFC refereeing

Derrick Lewis
Mandatory Credit: Josh Hedges - Zuffa LLC

Ahead of his Octagon return this weekend in the main event of UFC Vegas 66, former heavyweight title challenger, Derrick Lewis has backed recent calls from former middleweight champion, Israel Adesanya, for veteran referee, Steve Mazzagatti – or rather, Maserati to return to the Octagon in a refereeing capacity.

Set to headline at the UFC Apex facility this weekend against the surging, Serghei Spivac, Lewis will attempt to halt a run of two straight kncokout losses to both Tai Tuivasa, and most recently, Serghei Pavlovich, as he falters to the #7 in the official heavyweight rankings. 

Featuring at UFC 277 back in July, Lewis was stopped by surging Russian contender, Pavlovich inside just 55 seconds of the opening round, before complaining with the stoppage dished out bu the Octagon official.

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Similarly, and rather in jest, former middleweight champion, Adesanya, who lost his title to Alex Pereira at UFC 281 last weekend – joked how he would like to see controversial referee, Steve Mazzagatti return to officiating in the promotion, amid a lengthy run of late and egregious stoppages during his time in the Octagon.

Derrick Lewis calls for Steve ‘Maserati’ to return to officiating

Taking umbrage with the stoppage he was on the receiving end of against Pavlovich, fan-favorite knockout best, Derrick Lewis called for Mazzagatti – or rather, Maserati to return to officiating in the Octagon.

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“I for sure should have won that fight, I believe I should have won that fight,” Derrick Lewis told assembled media ahead of UFC Vegas 66. “The gameplan that we had had for that fight – it should have been an easy fight for me. I’ve been down and out before. And I look at the (Tai) Tuivasa fight, I believe I was winning the fight, and stuff happens.”

“Just like old Izzy (Israel Adesanya) was saying, we need to bring Maserati (Steve Mazzagatti) back – what’s his name, Maserati? Mazzagatti – Maserati – the same guy. We need to bring that back, man, for real.”

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The knockout outlier in the entire history of the UFC, in Lewis’ most recent professional victory, the New Orleans-born favorite stopped Chris Daukaus with a first round knockout back in December of last year. The stoppage came as Lewis’ whopping thirteenth knockout in the UFC – minting him as the most prolific KO artist in Octagon antiquity.