This past weekend during the main card of ‘UFC Fight Night: Sao Paulo’ top ranked women’s strawweight fighters Claudia Gadelha and Cortney Casey stepped into the Octagon in a highly anticipated showdown. For Casey, the fight was an opportunity to extend her win streak to 3, as she hoped to pick up a win over former strawweight title challenger Claudia Gadelha. On the other hand, Gadelha was looking to return to the win column following her July loss to Joanna Jedrzejczyk in a failed bid at the strawweight title.
Gadelha ultimately won the fight via unanimous decision, picking up 30-27 scores on all of the judges scorecards, however in the third round there was a bit of controversy as Gadelha threw a kick at Casey, who was on the ground at the time. The kick grazed Casey’s ponytail, and she grabbed at her head as if the kick had landed clean. Surprisingly, the referee didn’t take a point away, and the fight continued after Casey was able to recover.
In a statement released following the fight, the Brazilian Commission (CABMMA) explained why a point wasn’t taken away, explaining how the kick didn’t land to the head of Casey, who received quite a bit of backlash from fans for what they believed to be attempting to get Gadelha disqualified and win the fight easily.
Now, in a rare move, the commission has actually released a statement in which they stand by their statement, but defend Casey from critics.
MMAFighting has the statement:
Due to the repercussion on the incident between Courtney and Gadelha on UFC Bader vs Minotouro, held in São Paulo/SP on November 19th, 2016, The Brazilian Athletic Commission (CABMMA) would like to clearly state that it does not, in its role as a regulator, judge the character of any competitor, enroll on false public accusations with the intent to jeopardize their history or future in the sport, and most certainly does not analyze anyother circumstance which is not directly related to the regulation of the event, the license athletes and other professionals involved in their responsibility.
The major concern with the incident was to apply the correct judgment call, interpreted by the referee, Commission and medical staff, using their knowledge and commission´s guidelines, and additional resources, which in this case, replays shown in different angles, on the exact moment of the incident.
Finally, if the interpretation of the decision upon the conclusion of the fight has been interpreted in a different and distorted way beyond what was officially meant to, which was to determine the correct call, it should be condemned and discarded.
CABMMA stands by its decision related to this case, but repels and fully disagrees with any negativity towards Courtney Casey´s character as a professional women athlete of MMA.