UFC light heavyweight Ion Cutelaba was understandably disappointed at how his fight with Magomed Ankalaev ended.
The pair competed on the main card of UFC Norfolk on Saturday night with Ankalaev rocking Cutelaba early on in the first round. Although Cutelaba was wobbled, he was still in the fight and was countering with strikes despite being hurt.
Unfortunately, the referee saw enough and called an end to the fight with Cutelaba seemingly okay right away as he protested immediately while the fans started booing.
Many have since labeled it the worst stoppage in UFC history and Cutelaba believes the fans were robbed off a good fight:
”When it’s two fighters on this level and they came here to fight and show the world a good fight, it doesn’t matter, one round, three rounds, 40 seconds – let them fight,” Cutelaba said backstage (via MMA Fighting). “That referee, he doesn’t know how to do that. They have to (have) another referee to control this kind of fight.”
As for being wobbled, the Moldovan was simply playing possum as he revealed it was part of the game plan to get Ankalaev to engage him more. He also adds that he was controlling every strike Ankalaev threw on him during the sequence:
”I came all the way from Moldova, 14 or 15, to show the world I am the best, and the referee didn’t leave me to fight,” Cutelaba explained. “Every (strike) that my opponent did, I controlled it. When the referee stopped the fight, I was countering. This was a part of the game plan, and the referee thought I fell. But that was part of the game plan.
”When they stopped it, I was fighting him.”
Cutelaba later took to social media where he revealed that he would be appealing the loss on Monday:
“First thing monday morning we will be talking to the commission to make the appeal. Hopefully they see What all fans watching tonight saw and correct this injustice.Thank YOU for your support!”
A rematch appears to be the only option at this point.
What do you make of the whole situation?