UFC Austin recently witnessed a bout that has become the talk of the MMA community for reasons beyond the usual display of skill and strength. Jalin Turner delivered a first-round knockout against Bobby Green, a victory that should have been an event highlight.
But the bout’s conclusion has sparked widespread debate and criticism, particularly regarding the referee’s decision-making.
The match saw Turner ending his two-bout losing streak in a dramatic fashion. The 6’3″ lightweight executed a flawless one-two combination that sent Green to the canvas.
He ended up gaining back control and began a relentless assault with ground and pound. Despite Green being visibly incapacitated and unable to defend himself, the referee Kerry Hatley delayed intervening.
This hesitation allowed Turner to land over ten unanswered blows, a situation that has been widely criticized for potentially endangering Green’s health and safety.
UFC CEO Dana White did not mince words during the UFC Austin press conference after the event. When questioned about the controversial stoppage, White said: “One of the worst I’ve ever seen…Definitely a bad stoppage. Very bad.”
Despite the harrowing experience, Green recovered and was able to leave the Octagon on his own. To reassure followers that he was fine, Green posted a video on his Instagram story later that evening.
Kerry Hatley is a seasoned referee with experience in various MMA promotions. He reportedly acknowledged his mistake after the match.
Dana White pointed out that while some referees have made questionable statements in the past, Hatley’s recognition of his error is a step towards accountability in officiating.
JALIN TURNER PUTS BOBBY GREEN TO SLEEP!!!!
Should've been stopped a lot sooner. pic.twitter.com/VoYGIy92bV
— Video from: @TSV__1 (@TSV__1) December 3, 2023
White stated: “The difference is we’ve had some refs say some dumb sh*t in the past, like, ‘I allowed her to be a warrior tonight,’ and goofy sh*t like that. He knows he made a mistake tonight and does not feel not feel good about it, so, yeah, it’s unfortunate.”
Despite the controversy, it’s crucial to acknowledge Turner’s impressive performance. Coming off two split-decision losses, his victory over Green has reignited his pursuit of the lightweight title.
With a UFC record now standing at 7-4, Turner has reestablished himself as a formidable contender in the lightweight division.