UFC 190 dominated headlines this past weekend, but World Series of Fighting is also in the news, not only because it held an event on Saturday, but how the main event went down…
If you missed it, Rousimar Palhares–yes, the man who was banned by the UFC in 2013 for trashing Mike Pierce’s knee with an extended heel hook–is under fire once again, for not immediately releasing a submission. The welterweight was taking on Jake Shields in the headliner, and after he caught the latter with a Kimura in round three, Palhares didn’t immediately release the technique, after the ref intervened.
You can watch footage of the fight’s final moments here, and decide for yourself whether Palhares cranked the submission for too long.
Lots of fans and observers, including Shields, are upset with Palhares once again. Prior to his incident with Pierce, Palhares was suspended for 90 days back in 2011, after he didn’t immediately release a fight ending heel hook on Tomasz Drwal. Palhares isn’t only facing accusations that he held onto the fight ending Kimura for too long, as after the bout Shields accused him of eye gouging as well.
Recently Shields’ manager, Tareq Azim, spoke with MMA Fighting.com, and here is some of what the outraged rep had to say:
“I think he should be kicked out of the sport,” Azim said. “That’s why I love what the UFC did. The UFC made a statement that, look, this isn’t good for the sport. This isn’t good for the brand. This isn’t good for anything. He’s ruining careers.”
“I think he’s a terrible, terrible, terrible example of a fighter,” Azim said. “I think someone at this level, and the capacity of what this sport has turned into today, you should be the biggest model of a true martial artist. And he’s completely the opposite of that…”
Not surprisingly, Palhares is already defending himself and is insisting he’s not a dirty fighter. In a follow up interview with MMA Fighting, “Toquinho” argued he released the Kimura as soon as he felt referee Steve Mazzagatti tapping his back.
So, now it will be interesting to see how the WSOF handles this, and whether they elect to discipline Palhares or strip him of his title. One thing’s for sure, between this and the Khabib Nurmagomedov-Diaz brothers scuffle at WSOF 22, the event has a lot of folks talking….