John McCarthy gives his take on strange Merab Dvalishvili vs. Ricky Simon fight: “he went out twice”

Merab Dvalishvili, Ricky Simon

On the undercard of Saturday night’s exciting UFC Atlantic City card, Merab Dvalishvili and hist short-notice replacement opponent Rick Simon engaged in an exciting, three-round war. Unfortunately, the end of this contest was shadowed in controversy.

As the seconds wore off the clock, Simon, who seemed to be down two rounds, locked up a mounted guillotine. Though the choke looked deep, Dvalishvili showed incredible toughness, refusing to tap and frantically flailing his legs in what looked like an effort to show the referee he was still conscious.

Once the final horn had sounded, however, it became quite clear that somewhere along the line, Dvalishvili had faded out of consciousnesses. After a few confusing moments, this resulted in a TKO win for Simon, rather than a decision win for Dvalishvili as initially expected.

In the wake of this controversy, some members of the MMA community have suggested Dvalishvili never went out, and that he should have earned a decision win. Others, meanwhile, agree with the outcome we ultimately got.

In the opinion of current Bellator MMA commentator “Big” John McCarthy, who has long been considered one of the best referees in the game, the right decision was made. McCarthy not only believes Dvalishvili was out when the bout ended, but that he went out previously, having briefly turned himself off when his head bounced off the canvas after a takedown.

McCarthy gave his take on the issue on Twitter over the weekend, engaging with fans who debated the issue. See his comments below.

As you can see, McCarthy agrees that Simon should have won—he just feels he should have been awarded a submission win, not a TKO win.

What did you think of the fight-ending sequence in Merab Dvalishvili’s bizarre battle with Ricky Simon? Join the conversation in the comments section.

This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 4/23/2018.