Who watched the main event of last night’s UFC on Fox? It was a great fight, but the decision was awful. Just awful.
Taken as a whole, I didn’t even think the fight was that close. I had three sons watching with me. They thought Stipe, who they were rooting for, won easily. Going into the decision I had no doubt that Miocic would win. He pushed the action. He landed the harder punches. He went for some take downs, getting a few, and usually when not bullying Dos Santos into the cage. And Dos Santos’ face was a mess in comparison to Stipe’s.
The decision was unanimous. 48-47, 49-46 and 49-46 for Dos Santos. That’s insane. When they announced the 2 49-46 scores I was even more sure Miocic had won. There is no way anyone could see Dos Santos winning 4 of the 5 rounds.
Miocic clearly won round 1 and 2. Dos Santos probably won round 3. He arguably won round four. Five was close, but I had it pretty clearly for Stipe. So at best, giving the judges the benefit of the doubt, you could have it 48-47 for Dos Santos if you give him rounds 3-5. But 49-46? That means you had to give either round 1 or 2 to Dos Santos. What fight were they watching? I had it 49-46 Miocic, maybe 48-47 if you give JDS a lot of credit for the take down in 4. (I hope I’m remembering this right.) But no way did JDS win that fight and this is more obvious if you get away from scoring the rounds and just judge the fight as a whole.
For the record, I was rooting for Stipe because he’s an American (of Croatian decent) and a multi-sport athlete. I don’t have anything against Junior Dos Santos. I just don’t want to see another Cain Velasquez vs. JDS championship match. But I can see past my rooting interests. Last week I was rooting for Lawler, but I actually thought Hendricks won their fight. But at least that fight was debatable. The judges and some commentators apparently didn’t give Hendricks much credit for going for Lawler’s legs and then just hanging on. But that fight was superficially close. I think the Miocic Dos Santos fight was close in the sense that there were no near finishes and no one totally dominated, but Miocic was clearly the winner.
Off topic, I would be open to limiting heavy weight bouts to 3 rounds even if they are main events and championship fights. 5 round heavyweight fights are often called “wars” because by the final two rounds both fighters are spent cardio wise and have lost significant punching power and defense so they end up slugging each other or going to the ground and laying there, too spent to do much. Just standing there trading blows is where head injuries happen.