Jamahal Hill changes tune on referee Herb Dean’s non-stoppage at UFC 300: “It makes me think before obeying a ref’s command!”

By Curtis Calhoun - April 24, 2024

Former UFC light heavyweight champion Jamahal Hill has changed his previously neutral stance on referee Herb Dean’s inaction during the UFC 300 main event.

Jamahal Hill, UFC 300

Hill’s UFC comeback at UFC 300 fell short as he lost by first-round knockout to Alex Pereira in the main event. It was his first fight after winning and then vacating the title in 2023.

Just seconds before Pereira dropped Hill, Dean attempted to pause the action after Hill appeared to hit Pereira with a kick to the groin. Typically, fighters are given up to five minutes to recover from a groin strike, and both combatants get a clean reset as if it were the start of a new round.

But, that didn’t happen at UFC 300. Pereira gave Dean a light shove to move aside as he continued to press forward towards Hill. Seconds later, he dropped Hill with a left hook before finishing the fight with ground-and-pound.

UFC Hall of Famer Daniel Cormier and others have questioned whether or not Dean made the right call by not enacting a clean reset between Hill and Pereira. After initially agreeing with Dean’s decision-making, Hill has pivoted his position on the non-stoppage.

Jamahal Hill criticizes referee Herb Dean after UFC 300 controversy

During a recent interview with The Schmo, Hill reversed his stance on Dean’s non-stoppage at UFC 300.

“It’s protect yourself at all times, but after they tell you that, it’s obey my commands at all times too,” Hill said. “In the moment, whenever it happened, I stopped. He said ‘Stop’ before he interjected and I stopped. You can see Alex continue to close the distance on me…him closing that angle on me while I’m trying to check and make sure he’s good and things like that, it was a gritty competitor move. Something I should’ve peeked and caught on to and protected myself against…

“If Herb Dean could’ve done anything, I would’ve liked to have had a more clean and better reset,” Hill continued. “The fact that a ref would give your opponent the control of the Octagon like that, it makes me kinda think before I just straight-up disengage and just obey a ref’s command like that, if I’m being honest. I’m not trying to make an excuse or anything, but if there’s one thing that I look back on the fight that I would’ve done differently, it would’ve been disregarding that command and stayed on my fight, like I was, the angles.”

Luckily for Hill, he won’t have to wait long for a chance at redemption inside the Octagon. He’ll face the streaking Khalil Rountree at UFC 303, a card headlined by Conor McGregor vs. Michael Chandler.

Hill could potentially earn a rematch with Pereira with an impressive performance against Rountree. If a rematch comes to fruition, the controversial ending to UFC 300 will likely be a major part of the pre-fight storyline.

This article appeared first on BJPENN.COM


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