Being a referee in any professional sport is certainly not an easy job. You have to be 100% focused constantly and prepared to make correct decisions. This is particularly true for the Mixed-Martial Arts, where fighters risk their health to entertain the audience. No fighter wants to receive unnecessary damage and yet, they want to have a chance to retaliate even in difficult situations. So the referee has to find a correct moment to step in and stop the bout. But even the best in the business make mistakes occasionally. In the following article, we’re going to look at the UFC bouts that were stopped too soon. If watching and analyzing UFC fights is your hobby, you can use your knowledge to get some extra cash on 22Bet.
UFC Fight Night 143: Henry Cejudo vs TJ Dillashaw
This was one of the most anticipated events for the fight fans. TJ Dillashaw used to be a UFC Bantamweight champion at that point. Subsequent to losing his belt to Dominick Cruz in a razor-close bout, TJ went on a two-fight win streak and challenged the newly crowned champ and his former teammate Cody Garbrandt. Dillashaw knocked out his rival in the second round. After defending his belt once against the same opponent, TJ publicly announced his desire to cut weight and go down in the Flyweight division. Henry Cejudo, who used to be a flyweight king, was booked to face Dillashaw in 2019. Many experts were anticipating that TJ would enjoy an advantage on the feet and Cejudo’s only hope would be to use his Olympic-level wrestling. But as it turned out, everyone was wrong. Henry Cejudo tagged his opponent with a clean strike and knocked him down. TJ tried his best to retaliate and it seemed that he might have success, but the ref interfered quickly and stopped the fight. TJ seemed unsatisfied with the result and many fans also thought the fight was stopped too soon because it was the first round and TJ appeared to be okay when the ref intervened.
Robbie Lawler vs Ben Askren at UFC 235
Ben Askren is truly a living legend of MMA. Being an extraordinary all-American wrestler, Askren made his career debut in 2009. Till 2019, Ben didn’t have any losses on his resume. Nevertheless, many fans were still questioning his abilities, as Askren didn’t express his will to sign with the UFC. In 2019, Ben’s long-awaited debut occurred at UFC 233. He was booked to face another MMA legend and former UFC welterweight champ Robbie Lawler. Robbie was on a decline at the time and many viewed Askren as a huge favorite. As the fight started, Ben immediately tried to shoot for a takedown. Lawler anticipated the rival’s plan and countered it well. He lifted Ben up and slammed him on his head while proceeding to punch his face. It seemed that fans were about to witness Askren’s first loss, but Ben somehow managed to survive. A few minutes later, Askren attempted a rare submission “Bulldog choke” on Robbie. For a few seconds, Lawler’s arm went numb and the referee stepped in, as he thought Robbie was out. But this was not the case. Lawler immediately got up and protested. After looking at the replay on the screen, the ref acknowledged the mistake and apologized.
Magomed Ankalaev vs Ion Cutelaba at UFC fight night 169
Magomed Ankalaev and Ion Cutelaba used to be the rising stars of the UFC’s light-heavyweight division at the time. Two young and motivated fighters’ showdown occurred at UFC fight night 169. Both fighters started the bout actively, throwing fight-ending haymakers. Ankalaev got the better of his rival and managed to clip him with good shots. Cutelaba started shaking like he was hurt and the referee stopped the fight right away. Ion protested and explained that it was his plan to play being hurt just to bait his opponent and in reality he was fine. This fight is definitely one of the worst stoppages in UFC history.