Dana White weighs in on questionable UFC 294 doctor stoppage after illegal knee to Johnny Walker

ABU DHABI – The cageside doctor at UFC 294 was “inexperienced,” according to Dana White, which the UFC CEO attributed as the primary reason for his questionable decision making during Saturday’s event at Etihad Arena.

Perhaps the most bizarre moment of a card filled with fouls came during the featured bout between Magomed Ankalaev and Johnny Walker. After Ankalaev (18-1-1 MMA, 9-1-1 UFC) hit a grounded Walker (21-7 MMA, 7-4 UFC) with an illegal knee to the face in Round 1, referee Dan Movahedi called timeout and brought in the cageside doctor, who hasn’t been identified, to examine Walker.

The exchanges between Walker and the doctor weren’t clearly captured on the broadcast, but according to UFC roving reporter Megan Olivi, Walker’s coach, John Kavanagh, said his fighter was asked what country he was in. To which Walker responded with “the desert.”

Apparently that wasn’t a good enough answer for the doctor and well before the five minutes of allotted time to recover expired, Movahedi stopped the fight and ruled it a no contest on the advice of the doctor, which Walker immediately protested.

White, perhaps surprisingly, expressed a level of understanding under the circumstances.

“Listen, the guy’s inexperienced. He got up in there – I think there’s a lot of things that probably happened,” White said. “I guess he asked (Walker), ‘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. And he’s inexperienced. It sucks.

“It’s one of those things that happens sometimes. We’ll make it right, and we’ll fix it.”

Walker quickly became unruly in the cage and had to be restrained from Ankalaev, prompting White to intervene to ensure nothing got out of hand.

“That didn’t look like it was going in the right direction,” White said. “That’s all we needed. Yeah … yeah.”

White didn’t elaborate on how the UFC would make the situation right.

The cageside doctor was at the center of another bizarre scene earlier at UFC 294 after Victor Henry was on the receiving end of a hard kick to the groin from Javid Basharat. Henry dropped to the canvas and writhed in pain for about two minutes before the doctor stepped in to check on him.

The doctor told Henry “it wasn’t your balls” in reference to where Basharat’s kick landed.

“Oh no, it was all d*ck and balls,” Henry responded. “My d*ck was the most.”

Henry didn’t recover in time to continue fighting. It was revealed later on the UFC 294 broadcast that Henry was transported to a hospital where he vomited as a result of the groin kick.

For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC 294.

Be sure to visit the MMA Junkie Instagram page and YouTube channel to discuss this and more content with fans of mixed martial arts.

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