Marc Goddard defends Kamaru Usman vs. Colby Covington stoppage

Marc Goddard, Daniel Cormier, UFC 252
Image: @marcgoddard_uk on Instagram

MMA referee Marc Goddard has spoken publicly for the first time about the controversial stoppage in the Kamaru Usman vs. Colby Covington fight at UFC 245.

Goddard stopped the welterweight title fight with just 50 seconds left in the fifth round in what was up until the point of the stoppage a very close fight. Heading into the final round, one judge had the fight tied up 38-38 while the two other judges had it 39-37 for Usman and 39-37 for Covington, who felt the fight was stopped early.

Covington was not happy with the stoppage at the time and he has expressed more disgust towards Goddard in recent interviews, saying that the referee “sucks at his job.” Goddard hasn’t said much publicly about the stoppage, but now he has broken his silence. In an interview with Dan Hardy, Goddard defended himself and explained why he stopped the fight. Check it out below (h/t MMAjunkie.com).

“It was a difficult fight. I know I handled it on the money, to a T. I’m seeing things unfold, and I see Colby put down twice in rapid order plus 24 minutes of back-and-forth before that. So there’s a lot of damage sustained. Then I see him go down, and obviously he stays in that turtle position started on the double, then pulling his hands back. This is where everything will narrow in for me. I’m now firmly put in the spotlight. I have a decision to make and I’m trying to assess this. I have to assess this, real-time, with everything I saw, etc.,” Goddard said.

“I’m looking at Colby, and then I see the damage he’s sustained, the two knockdowns, etc. When you are face down, when I can’t see you, I can’t read you. So I’m now trying to compute in my mind, ‘Are you there, or are you not?’” Goddard continued.

“Could I have let that fight go on? Yeah. Could have I stood back and let it go on? Yeah. Should I have let it? And that’s the narrative here. Should I have? And that’s the point I make when I’m assessing what happened, assessing the position he’s in. Two knockdowns and he’s being punched.”

Do you agree with what Marc Goddard said about the stoppage in the Kamaru Usman vs. Colby Covington fight at UFC 245?

This article first appeared on BJPENN.com on 2/17/2020.