Pearson vs Guillard controversy

No Contest.

That was the decision in the co-main event of the evening in

Manchester, England as the lightweight match-up between British

favorite Ross Pearson and Melvin Guillard was marred by

controversy.

A little over 90 seconds in the bout, Pearson attempted a flying

knee attack that Guillard defended, partially catching him in the

air. The two fell to the canvas, Guillard getting to his feet

first, where he unloaded a pair of quick, powerful knees to the

head of Pearson. Referee Marc Goddard jumped in to stop the action

right away, a sizable gash having opened on Pearson’s

head.

The doctor assessed the cut and deemed Pearson unable to

continue (he needed 32 stitches to close the wound after the bout)

and bout was waved off, declared a No Contest, as Goddard

identified Pearson as a downed opponent when the second knee

connected, an unintentional foul according to the Unified Rules of

Mixed Martial Arts.

Replays would show that while the first knee was legal, the

second blow was close, as Pearson’s hand appears to reach the

floor after Guillard is in the process of throwing the fight-ending

knee.

At the post-fight press conference, UFC executive Garry Cook

announced the two would face each other in a rematch when the UFC

returns to London on March 8, 2014.

Check out the video above and decide for yourself – was it

an illegal blow or did the referee make the wrong call?