UFC CEO Dana White has weighed in on the abrupt ending to Magomed Ankalaev vs. Johnny Walker at UFC 294.
Ankalaev and Walker squared off in an important light heavyweight matchup on the UFC 294 main card. The winner could’ve potentially cemented themselves as a top title contender against the winner of Jiří Procházka vs. Alex Pereira.
While many believed the fight would be a competitive, back-and-forth affair, the action was stopped not long after it started. Just minutes into the fight, Ankalaev landed an illegal knee to a grounded Walker that paused the contest.
As the Octagon-side doctor evaluated Walker, he rendered Walker unable to continue fighting despite him appearing ready to continue. Typically, fighters are allowed up to five minutes to recover from an illegal strike before a ruling is made about whether or not the fight will resume, but this rule wasn’t followed.
Ankalaev and Walker nearly sparked an all-out brawl after the fight was waved off, with White and security personnel intervening. After the odd conclusion to the fight, White blamed the Octagon doctor’s inexperience in handling these types of scenarios.
Dana White On Bizarre Ending To Magomed Ankalaev vs. Johnny Walker
During the UFC 294 post-fight press conference, White weighed in on the bizarre ending to the light heavyweight clash.
“The guy’s inexperienced. I think there’s a lot of things that probably happened. I guess he asked him ‘Where are you right now?’ and his response was ‘I’m in the desert.’ He’s not wrong…
“I think there’s a big language barrier in there between the two of them. Inexperience [from the doctor]. It sucks. It’s one of those things that happen sometimes but we’ll make it right and we’ll fix it.”
Ankalaev’s last two fights have ended bizarrely. Entering UFC 294, he was coming off of a controversial draw to Jan Blachowicz for the vacant light heavyweight belt at UFC 282.
Walker was looking to potentially secure a title shot after three consecutive wins. He most recently defeated Anthony Smith back in May by unanimous decision.
It’s uncertain if the UFC will rebook Ankalaev vs. Walker for a later date, but the highly anticipated light heavyweight matchup concluded with more questions than answers.
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