UFC flyweight call out Cage Warriors after they allow for knees to the head of grounded opponent repeatedly

Cage Warriors is a renowned mixed martial arts promotion based in Europe. Established in 2002, Cage Warriors has been organizing MMA events across the United Kingdom and Europe.

Cage Warriors is currently spear headed by Graham Boylan – who doubles as Paddy Pimblett’s controversial manager.

Initially, Cage Warriors was a small MMA organization, but it gained popularity among the MMA enthusiasts. The financial side of the equation wasn’t really working until UFC stepped up and bootstrapped Cage Warriors as their feeder organization. The deal to air on UFC’s Fight pass singlehandedly makes the promotion profitable. But there’s a caveat attached, as with most feeder orgs, this means the talent is released from the contract to go into the UFC and often slighted with basic contracts.

Pimblett is a great example of this. Even though he was a former champion in Cage Warriors, his initial contract was $12,000 to show $12,000 to win.

“If he [Pimblett] lost that fight, he was only getting $12,000, incredible number for a name like him,” Ariel Helwani told his audience during an episode of The MMA Hour.

“for a guy who’s making that kind of buzz, when you go back to Conor’s second fight back in 2013 against Max Holloway… Conor made $12K and $12K.”

Conor McGregor’s camp is also on the outs with Cage Warriors execs with SBG insignia banned in the promotion.

But there’s a more egregious situation at Cage Warriors currently. Apparently, Gerardo Fanny was allowed to repeatedly take shots to the head of the grounded opponent.

 Tanio Pagliariccio refused to continue after R2 ending considering the fouls and the victory was then given to Gerardo Fanny by ‘retirement’ .

This clip elicited a unique reaction from UFC flyweight based out of England – Muhammad Mokaev.

The ban on knee strikes to the head of a grounded opponent is part of the unified MMA ruleset, which was established to ensure the safety of athletes and promote fair competition. The ruleset was developed through collaboration between various MMA organizations, including the UFC, and regulatory bodies.


Under the unified MMA ruleset, a grounded opponent is defined as an athlete who has any part of their body, other than their feet, touching the mat or floor. Strikes to the head of a grounded opponent with any part of the knee or shin are strictly prohibited, and any one who violates this rule can be penalized or disqualified.

Recently Colorado State Athletic commission authorized ONE FC to use their own ruleset which allows for soccer kicks – and they got harshly criticized for it.

Association of Boxing Commissions and Combative Sports had their president Mike Mazzulli issue a written statement condemning the sanctioning of this ruleset:

“The Association of Boxing Commissions is very disappointed in the State of Colorado regarding the upcoming ONE Championship event on May 6, 2023,” Mazzulli said. “Colorado is stepping back decades regarding health and safety. In fact, if the executive director in Colorado has any medical documentation or studies that show ‘knees to the head of a grounded opponent is safer,’ he should share the information with the ABC.

“At first glance, it appears the State of Colorado has amended their rules simply to attract a promotion. (ONE Championship has not yet operated in the U.S. and uses ‘knees to the head of grounded opponents’ in their foreign promotions). The ABC Rules specify ‘No knees to the head of a grounded opponent’ because the organization believes a Commission’s first obligation must be to fighter safety. Rule changes should always have fighter safety at the forefront.”

He concluded, “ONE Championship is welcome to bring their promotions to the United States, but they should be using the unified rules. The liability that the State of Colorado is incurring with this rule amendment is staggering.”