Heated debate continues to surround the ending of the Brandon “The True” Vera’s loss to Fabricio Werdum at UFC 85. Involved in his second controversial fight in almost as many weeks, Referee Dan Miragliotta called a stop to the fight with with only 20 seconds left in the 1stRound, when Werdum had Vera fully mounted, raining punches to his face. An irate Vera wants a rematch.
“There was 15 seconds left (in the 1stRound). Let me take my ass whupping and let’s go to a second round,” expressed Vera in his post-fight Octagon interview.
Werdum did have Vera in a powerful position as he threw numerous punches to his face, however Vera was doing a solid job of protecting himself and avoiding a fair share of the strikes. None of the punches that landed were knock out power by any means. Miragliotta did let it go for a little bit, but felt that with 20 seconds left it was time to put the fight to an end. Vera thought differently.
“The referee was asking me, talking to me, saying something like, ‘are you okay?’ He was talking to me,” stated Vera at UFC 85‘s post-fight press conference. “I remember he was talking to me and I was saying, ‘I’m okay. I’m okay. I’m okay.’ I said it three times. I made sure I stressed, ‘I’m.’ My last fight I fought with a broken hand after the first thirty seconds, all three rounds, no complaints. I was getting punched in the face man. Come on.”
Vera isn’t the only one that feels this way. UFC Color Commentator Joe Rogan shared Vera’s same thoughts after the fight stating that he thought the fight was prematurely ended as well.
The Rule Book states that a fighter must “intelligently defend himself” and Miragliotta felt that Vera covering up just wasn’t enough, even though Vera was completely conscious the entire time and reacted immediately when he stepped in.
As the crowd rained down boo’s after the fight due to the stoppage, Vera and Werdum may have agreed to a rematch, or so Vera had thought.
“I’m kind of disappointed in Fabricio,” said Vera. “He said yes earlier in the cage, right after. At least that’s what I thought. He shook his head, yea, we can do it again. Now he’s telling me to get back in line. I understand why he doesn’t want to fight me again.”
Vera, however did have some kinds words to say about his opponents game. “Fabricio had an awesome mount. I wasn’t getting out of the mount…(but)I didn’t even start kicking yet,” he explained.
But that was about it as far as compliments goes for Vera, who has now compiled two consecutive losses since returning from his year long layoff from the UFC due to a contract dispute.
“That ref sucks,” stated Vera. “I don’t agree with that stoppage and I’m pissed. I had to walk away from the ref.”
Miragliotta also refereed the James Thompson/Kimbo Slice bout in EliteXC’s debut on CBS last weekend, where many thought that he missed Kimbo tapping out, though in Miragliotta’s defense there is no clear visual evidence of a tap.
We will soon see if the UFC does decide to grant Vera a rematch or not. But with what is at stake for Vera and his career, he is hoping that they see it his way.
Vote in our 5ThRound Forums on whether or not you feel Vera was Robbed, and let us know what you think about the stoppage.
(Picture Courtesy of UFC.com)