If anyone was looking for proof that cage-side monitors were not the answer to outbreaks of controversial scoring, I present to you UFC 131: "Dos Santos vs. Carwin" from the Rogers Arena last Saturday night (June 11) in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.
The promotion's trip to "Hollywood North" had a handful of questionable decisions, including but not limited to the featherweight scrap between Darren Elkins and Michihiro Omigawa featured on the live Facebook stream of the event's preliminary card.
Elkins was awarded the unanimous decision win.
That sent UFC President Dana White into a rage, prompting him to sympathetically award Omigawa his win bonus and torch the judges for their perceived incompetence (via Heavy.com):
"It's very frustrating and it's horrible. It's just getting to the point now where when you see something that's that blatantly wrong... the hard part for me is you're affecting people's lives. It's one thing... listen; my business, you know, people get pissed off... what people are pissed off about is the fighters. How hard these guys train, how hard they work and to have somebody... we even have television monitors in front of these f*cking guys now. You're watching a television monitor and you still come up with a 30-27 in these fights? You should never judge another fight as long as you live. You don't deserve to be in the fight business, you're hurting these f*cking guys that are out training and working hard. It just absolutely drives me nuts."
Jonathan Tweedale, the Commissioner for the Vancouver Athletic Commission, explains to Luke Thomas of SBNation.com that round two was "challenging" to score and that an "argument can be made in favor of either fighter."
The Commish elaborates:
"If there is any controversy as to the outcome of the fight it must be because of the second round. That was a very challenging round to score. An argument can be made in favour of either fighter. Elkins landed more punches. At one point, when Omigawa came forward, he was stopped dead in his tracks by Elkins' combination punches, and at another point he was slightly buckled. Due to Omigawa's unusual stance and balance, it was difficult to tell exactly whether he was rocked by some of these shots. However, you could see Omigawa's leg bend, and the control shift to Elkins as he landed the combo, stopping Omigawa in his tracks, taking the center of the cage, and going on the attack again. These sequences, as well as the total effective strikes landed, could reasonably warrant awarding the round to Elkins. Elkins didn't land many more than Omigawa, but he did land more. (The FightMetric numbers agree.) As to the blood - it represents something, but a cut can be caused by a glancing blow and some fighters just cut more readily than others."
What say you Maniacs?
It's difficult to avoid the mob mentality that frequently accompanies bad decisions, but whose side are you taking in this debate? Was the scoring a complete aberration? Or was the fight close enough to make an argument for either fighter?
Let's hear your take on the decision for "Elkins vs. Omigawa."