Jiri Prochazka accepted his UFC 295 loss to Alex Pereira without complaint, even though many believe the fight was stopped too early and it deprived him of the chance to come back.
Jiri Prochazka had no complaints about the stoppage in his UFC 295 loss to Alex Pereira, but he might be the only fighter who didn’t get upset about the way the fight ended. The finishing sequence began with Pereira blasting Prochazka with a punch that dropped him to his knees, after which the former light heavyweight champion went for a takedown. Pereira then unloaded a barrage of elbows, causing Prochazka to go limp momentarily before the fighters fell to the canvas. A split second later, referee Marc Goddard rushed in to stop the fight, however Prochazka sprung back to his feet immediately. Afterward, Prochazka said Goddard “was right” with his call and said that he accepted the loss.
While UFC welterweight Matt Brown appreciates Prochazka’s statement and sentiment, he says the reality is Goddard pulled the trigger a little too early and Prochazka is just taking the high road with his response. “It was definitely early,” Brown said on The Fighter vs. The Writer. “I don’t think there’s any question about that, especially at this level and especially at the championship level. Not that there should be a difference, but there should be a difference between amateur and then pro. At that level, it was certainly early. “Personally, I think that’s Jiri’s humility coming out of him. I think if it was the worst stoppage in the world, you wouldn’t see him complain. He might say something about it, but I don’t think he’d complain about it. He’s just that kind of guy. He’s got the samurai spirit deep running in his blood. I don’t think you’re going to hear from him any real complaints and I have a lot of respect for him for carrying himself that way. But the ref, you’ve just got to let it go.”
Brown has often argued for referees to allow the fighters every opportunity to escape a bad position rather than stopping a fight when there’s still a chance for a comeback. That being said, Brown acknowledges that Goddard and other referees have an impossibly tough job so he sympathizes with the decisions they’re forced to make, but he can only speak from a fighter’s perspective. In this case, he wishes Prochazka was given more time to either fight back or allow Pereira the chance to stamp his victory with a definitive ending. “This is what we do for a living … give the guy a chance,” Brown said. “We’ve seen some insane comebacks. To be fair to the referees, it is very subjective. You’ve got a split second to make a decision.
As much as Brown believes the result would have been the same, with Pereira winning by knockout, he still wishes Prochazka had the opportunity to come back, but that was taken away from him with the early stoppage. “Only in this sport do one a million shots happen,” Brown said. “That’s why we love the sport.”
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