It was looking like a contender for fight of the night when Jason High and Rafael Dos Anjos went to war in the Octagon Saturday night. The first round was back and forth as both men landed hard shots. When High seemed to gain an advantage in the ground, Dos Anjos showed off his guard game and threatened with the submission. Soon enough the momentum of the fight seemed to shift in favor of Dos Anjos who was obviously the fresher fighter.
When the second round began, High had more pep in his step, though the welterweight-turned-lightweight, slowed down quickly while Rafael Dos Anjos seemed to just be starting to find his range on the feet. After some hard exchanges from both fighters, Dos Anjos clipped High with a hard left cross that stunned High and dropped him to the mat. Dos Anjos, a ground specialist, followed High to the mat and pinned him down with his knees. High found himself in a desperate spot, stuck between the cage and the flurrying Dos Anjos. For a moment it looked like High was getting his bearings, but eventually the ref stepped in to stop the fight.
The controversy, as usual, comes from the referee stoppage. The punches Dos Anjos was landing were not massively damaging, though they were being rained down without any indication of slowing. High simply got stuck in a spot where he couldn’t, as the rules state, intelligently defend himself.
As Dos Anjos celebrated, High looked up at the ref in disbelief, he got up immediately and began to argue with the official. He then pushed the ref, displaying his frustration with the stoppage. The fact of the matter is that some fighters would rather be knocked unconscious before the fight is stopped by the ref, but those simply aren’t the rules. There is no doubt Jason High is a tough fighter, but he got stuck in a position where he was defenseless.
Dana White, who had heard about the push the following day, has officially announced that Jason High has been cut from the UFC. Disgusted by High’s actions toward the ref, White immediately decided that, despite High’s apologies via twitter, he would no longer fight for the UFC. High’s aforementioned apologies seem to be genuine, but, unfortunately for High, they are not enough for White. High’s twitter apology can be seen below:
Incredibly sorry & embarrassed for the ref incident. Will never happen again.— Marcelino Evil (@KCBanditMMA) June 8, 2014
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