Mario Yamasaki issues statement following controversial co-main event at UFC Belem.
Mixed martial arts referee Mario Yamasaki faced a ton of criticism following his controversial stoppage in the co-main event of last weekend’s UFC Fight Night 125 event in Belem, Brazil.
The veteran referee allowed flyweight newcomer Priscila Cachoeira to take a lot of damage from the fists and elbows of former women’s bantamweight title challenger Valentina Shevchenko without stepping in to call of the contest.
Yamasaki was showered with a bunch of hateful messages on social media, including an Instagram post from UFC President Dana White.
Priscilla Cachoeira, you showed so much heart and toughness in that fight. I’m honored to have you fight in the UFC. Unfortunately the ref is there to protect you and Mario DID NOT do that. This isn’t his first disgusting performance in the octagon. Another unfortunate thing is that i can’t do anything about I️t only the Brazilian commission can and i am hoping after this scary, incompetent showing he hopefully will never set foot in that Octagon again. Strikes landed was 230-3.
Today Mr. Yamasaki responded to his critics in a statement given to MMAFighting:
“During the second round, I signaled to ‘Pedrita’ that if she didn’t move I’d stop the fight, and every time I’d stop, I told her and she moved to try to escape from the punches. Unfortunately, I also can’t control the number of blows thrown — again, when a fighter is trying to come back she’s game. Fighters go through times of hard effort and dedication to be there. MMA is a contact sport and no fighter likes his fight to be stopped with no chance to revert the result. In my opinion, I allowed Pedrita to be a warrior and keep fighting. I could have stopped the fight in the second crucifix or in the mount, but she moved the whole time. I also recognize that I should have stopped when she tapped the first time to the rear-naked choke. I only stopped a few seconds later. About other people’s opinions, it’s their right to say.”
What do you think of the statement given by Mario Yamasaki? Sound off PENN Nation!