Edson Barboza’s manager Alex Davis says that rival Paul Felder has agreed to a trilogy fight after their controversial split decision outcome at UFC 242.
Felder won a split decision with scores of 30-27, 29-28 and 27-30 in his favor. The fact that opposing judges had the fights 30-27 in favor of each fighter was very concerning.
The decision was extremely controversial amongst fans and media. According to MMADecisions.com, 13 of 16 media members scored the fight 29-28 in favor of Barboza, with three having it 29-28 for Felder. Meanwhile, 63 percent of fans thought Barboza took the fight 29-28, with 28 percent going 29-28 for Felder and 1 percent with other scores.
(Author’s note: I scored the fight 29-28 for Felder, giving him rounds two and three and Barboza round one. Round two was a swing round that was very close. It was a close fight no matter how you cut it.)
Davis told MMAFighting.com that Felder has verbally agreed to the trilogy after the two have split a pair of fights previously. They also met at UFC on FOX 16 in July 2015, with Barboza taking home a unanimous decision in a “Fight of the Night” performance by both men in Chicago.
“Paul Felder is down to doing it,” Davis said. “I’ll talk to UFC matchmaker Sean Shelby this week. Edson wants the Felder fight, but we don’t know if that’s going to happen.”
Davis recently appealed the decision with the UFC, who commissioned the event. He said the UFC denied the appeal, but he’s hopeful that just the act of appealing could represent some change for the good when it comes to MMA judging.
“We have the utmost respect for Paul Felder,” Davis said. “He thinks he won, and he’s very coherent. He also agrees that the scorecards were absurd. We all know it’s absurd that one judge scores it 30-27 to one fighter and another judge scores it 30-27 to the other.”
With the loss, Barboza has now lost two straight fights with a KO loss to Justin Gaethje in his previous outing. As for Felder, he’s currently riding a two-fight win streak with a unanimous decision over James Vick in his last fight.
Who are you picking in the rematch: Edson Barboza vs Paul Felder?
This article first appeared on BJPENN.COM on 10/7/2019.