The much-anticipated light-heavyweight clash between Johnny Walker and Magomed Ankalaev took an unforeseen twist, leading to its premature end in the first round due to the ringside physician’s intervention.
Adding to the intrigue, the ringside medical official found himself embroiled in another controversial moment, casting doubt on Victor Henry’s alleged groin shot. This accusation only fueled the already heated atmosphere surrounding the bout.
The pivotal moment occurred when Ankalaev delivered an illegal knee strike to Walker, prompting the referee to summon the attending doctor. It was the physician who ultimately advised the third party in the Octagon to end the contest. This decision left both competitors and fans alike in surprise.
UFC CEO Dana White did not mince words, expressing his frustration with the unfolding situation. He later disclosed the conversation that transpired between the UFC competitor and the doctor.
Joe Rogan was not on commentary duty for the Abu Dhabi event, and couldn’t contain his dismay at the decision to halt the 205lbs match. He vehemently criticized the call, labeling it as both ‘stupid’ and ‘crazy.’
When the referee waved off the match, Rogan remarked: “I don’t understand. Why are they calling the fight?! This is crazy.”
Despite the setback, Walker demonstrated unwavering determination to continue the match.
Rogan went on to assert, “He got hit with an illegal shot and wants to keep going… let him go. This is where formalities and all this stuff makes no sense.”
The seasoned podcaster contunued, “Let them keep going. This is stupid… let them fight.”
Walker recently shared his exchange with the doctor during the match. Walker recounted the incident in an interview with Ariel Helwani.
He said, “He asked me if I wanted to continue fighting. I said, ‘Yes.’ He said, ‘Where are you?’ I didn’t want to say the wrong answer because I was excited when he was doing the test and I wanted to say the right answer.”
“I thought to say Abu Dhabi… and then I said, ‘Fine, I’m in the f**king desert, bro. I’m here. I’m good… I’m in the desert. I’m in the Middle East’.”