Jason High is seemingly out of mixed martial arts (MMA) work for the next 12 months because he couldn't keep his hands to himself at UFC Fight Night 42.
But, it would have been worse had he not immediately apologized ... seriously.
High was on the wrong end of a Rafael dos Anjos assault two weeks ago (June 7, 2014) inside Tingley Coliseum in Albuquerque, N.M., compelling the referee in charge of the action, Kevin Mulhall, to intervene and call a halt to the Lightweight match midway through round two.
Unfortunately, High didn't agree with Mulhall's stoppage and shoved him, a knee-jerk, emotional reaction that ultimately compelled Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) to terminate his contract. As if that wasn't punishment enough, New Mexico State Athletic Commission dropped the hammer on High with a year-long suspension and $1,900 fine.
MMAFighting.com has the details:
"According to New Mexico State Athletic Commission chairman Tom King, High has been suspended for one year for pushing referee Kevin Mulhall after his second-round TKO loss to Rafael dos Anjos at UFC Fight Night 42 at Tingley Coliseum in Albuquerque, N.M. The suspension expires on June 7, 2015. In addition to the suspension, High has been fined 10 percent of his fight purse, which amounts to $1,900."
The report indicates that High -- who didn't agree with the message UFC was sending -- has the opportunity to appeal the aggressive ruling, which was perhaps meant to serve as a lesson to other fighters that touching officials will not be tolerated. And his manager, Mike Kogan, according to the report, will try to help High get the sentenced reduced.
Especially considering these additional comments from King that make it appear to be a tough fight:
"He apologized to the referee and got on Twitter. That's why it's only a year. You do not hit or push an official ever and certainly not in New Mexico."
Only a year!