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Doctors Nearly Stopped Jon Jones vs. Alexander Gustafsson Heading into Final Round

Posted on by Jeff Cain

Jon Jones UFC 87UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones narrowly escaped a technical knockout loss in the UFC 165 main event against Alexander Gustafsson.

Jones received a cut over his right eye in the opening round that impaired his vision and proved difficult for his cutman to close.  The ringside doctor took a close look at the laceration following the fourth round and considered stopping the fight.

“(Jones) has got a massive cut.  I don’t know if you heard, but the doctors were going to stop the fight going into the last round because of the cut,” said UFC president Dana White during the event’s Post Show on Fox Sports 2.

“Jones begged them not to stop the fight.  From what I understand, (referee John) McCarthy did too, pleaded them not to stop the fight,” added White.

Had the fight been stopped due to the cut, Gustafsson would be the new UFC light heavyweight champion.  Instead, Jones was allowed to continue, had a strong effort in the final round, and retained his title by unanimous decision.

In his UFC 159 title defense against Chael Sonnen, Jones suffered a dislocated big toe that would have prevented him from continuing had Sonnen lasted just 27 more seconds and made it out of the first round.  In back-to-back fights, Jones’ title reign was put in jeopardy.

With the win over Gustafsson on Saturday, Jones surpassed Tito Ortiz’ record for most title defenses in UFC light heavyweight history.

A rematch with Gustafsson at some point in time seems inevitable.

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  • uncle

    This arrogant prick wears a shirt not quite human
    he looked more then f****** human to me last night

  • Oswald Cobblepott

    The doctors never came close to stopping that fight they know the magnitude of the event and those cuts were not worthy of a stoppage

  • Ian Price

    Bones is definitely a warrior. That said, I had the fight 48-47 for Alex. How did the one judge score it 49-46??

    • Maddawgmar

      I agree the I had the fight for Alex by a round, but I don’t argue the decision because it was that close. And that 49-46 was a garbage score.

      • Gio

        I hope someone finds the judge who score the bout 49-46 and someone put a beating on him that will leave him crippled and living as a vegetable for the rest of his life. Must’ve been a freaking European hater!
        Anyway, I had Gus winning this fight, but if push came to shove and really had to give bones the win it should’ve at the least been a split decision not a unanimous decision. That’s total crap on the freaking moron that scored 49-46. He should get fired literally, like skin him alive dump him in a barrel of gasoline and light him up! (LOL been watching too many gore movies lately, can you tell?)

        • julian moran

          The idea that some fighters are more deserving of a split decision over a unanimous decision win is a fallacy.

          In a perfect world there would not be split decisions.
          A split decision does not mean that the fight was closer then a unanimous decision. It only means that the judges do not agree on who won.

      • Ian Price

        Agreed, it was close enough for a 48-47 jones win. But the 49-46 was totally suspect, because of all the takedowns and strikes landed by Gustafsson. I know he got his ass kicked in rounds 4 and 5, but there’s no way he lost both rounds 2 AND 3.

        • Chicago

          All the takedowns…? u mean 2? both of them only holding JJ down for less than 15 sec? then yes all of those TD’s.

          • Maddawgmar

            Your right. There were only two, but in rounds that were otherwise even those takedowns won Alex the round, at least IMO. But there is the unfair stigma that you clearly have to beat the champion. So in that way Jones did win.

          • Ping

            49-46 was bulls*** but it was extremely close, and Jones was able to pull ahead in the later rounds.

          • Ian Price

            It was more than jones managed!! And it’s not like jones’ takedown did any harm. Alex got up almost as easily as jones did.

            Anyway, I don’t have a big problem with 48-47 jones. It was close. But that one 49-46 score was confusing. Wondering if it was the same judges who scored Frankie’s 3 recent losses !

          • tyrone

            Yes 2 takedowns,quite an accomplishment beings no one has even taken down jones once. Gus should win rematch

          • David Moseley

            Yes all the takedowns. They ONLY takedowns that jones been hit by. If I was a judge something such as that would be HUGE in my book. Taking Jon Jones down is an achievement in its own as well as stuffing 100% of his takedowns. But what would we know coming from a guy who spells you as “u” and second’s as sec.

          • Chicago

            You know what. I was more than willing to have an adult conversion about a topic, but if you want to have a grammer war…. bring it.Your 2nd sentence “they only takedowns” wrong. If I “were” a judge is the correct way to say that. And finally it is either achievement “on” its own or achievement in its own right. My mom is an English teacher…. KABOOM!

          • Berry

            *Grammar* lol, couldn’t help it, sorry

          • Chicago

            Guess she still has a lot more to teach me.

    • TK

      The 49-46 was very confusing.

    • uncle

      That arrogant Prick was wearing a shirt not
      quite human he looked more then fu*kin human
      to me

    • JLDJ

      You’ll see how much of a warrior he is when he’s brain dead because they didn’t stop that fight!

  • Cptmats

    They should have stopped it, at least the right man would have left with the belt !

    • Ping

      First, I wanted Bones to get beat. That being said the decision was right. Decisions are about who would have won if the fight was allowed to keep going. The first two rounds I felt went to Alex. Round 3 was a tossup. Alex was strong until he caught the spinning elbow in round 4. By the end of round 5 he was barely alive. If it had been allowed to continue I don’t think he would have won.

      • TK

        I don’t think judges decisions have anything to do with how a fighter “may” fight if it were to continue.

        I’m pretty sure a fight is judged on what happened during the fight, who controlled the distance, who landed cleaner strikes, who got the take downs etc.

      • Cptmats

        I agree on your scoring except the fourth, I gave it to Alex even with the elbow ! I think it was to little to late. Jones got picked apart for 4:30 of that round and didn’t land the elbow until the last twenty five seconds.

        After re-watching the fight, I still think the dec was bad !

        • Ian Price

          I watched the fight again. Alex won the first 2 rounds. The third and fourth rounds I gave to Alex but they were close. The fifth round was all Jones. So the fight should have been 49-46 Alex, or 48-47 Alex, or 48-47 jones.

    • Maddawgmar

      I wonder if I’m the only one who thinks McCarthy was out of line by begging the Doc not to stop the fight. The ref is only supposed to say, I think he is ok to go or not. If he did plead like Dana said then he showed he wasn’t totally impartial in that fight. Which is a shame.

  • MikeMcKinney

    I don’t agree with the 49-49 but I think I get it. I had Alex winning the 1st and the 4th. However jones did have that flurry the last 45 seconds of the 4th where he looked like he might finish. I didn’t give him the round for it, but I’ve seen judges in the past give rounds like that.

    Every moment of the fight that Alex stopped jones from moving forward he won. Jon is good when he takes the center and moves forward. He’s terrible when he’s moving back. He usually just moves straight back and covers up with no offense.
    Seemed odd to me that Alex let jones move forward the 2nd and 3rd after he did so well in the 1st, and then again the first 4 minutes of the 4th.

    • Shawn Steinberg

      Not being rude, and also maybe your just mistaken on which rounds were which but literally no one scored the 4th rd for Gus. That was by far and away Jones best round and the only rd in the whole fight that Jones clearly won.
      In my opinion it should have been 48-47 for Gustaffson. I just knew the judges wouldn’t give it to him which makes hearing this about it almost being stopped by the doctor even worse. Sick of hearing about oh you have to finish the champ or beat the champ to be the champ, umm ya no shit lol but honestly that B.S. it’s no different from any other fight. It should be scored the same way as all the other, only problem with that is the people doing the scoring are complete morons 90% of the time so it makes it pretty hard to get legit results. Either way it was such a great fight, the epitome of why I love this sport. HUGE Gustafsson fan after that performance. Pure epicness.

      • julian moran

        I think that everyone forgot that Gus. dominated the round prior to getting beat towards the end. I would say round 4 was a draw.

        • Cptmats

          Jones only dominated the last twenty five seconds, He got picked apart untill that point. I gave it to Gus.

    • Ping

      You didn’t give Jones the 4th??? Dude he hurt Alex BAD from that elbow. I think that’s what cost him the fight. That was the real turning point. He was doing fine until that caught him. He never was able to come back after that.

      • MikeMcKinney

        I agree that in the last 45 seconds of that round jones easily won. However the first 4:15 Gus was way out ahead. I do understand how some may give the 4th to jones for that extremely strong 45sec. That’s why I understood the judge giving him the 4th, even though I didn’t.
        To the other guy, the 5th rd was easily jones best. I would never have scored it 10-8, but that was the round that could have made the fight a tie had someone gave Alex the 2nd, or 3rd.

        • Cptmats

          It was actually only the last 25 second. Jones landed the elbow at 4:35

      • Cptmats

        Significant strikes were even in the fourth and as gassed as Gus was he still out landed Jones in the fifth according to fight metric.

        • MikeMcKinney

          I’m surprised to hear that about the 5th, but I believe you. I never check fight stats as I usually view them as irrelevant. A guy could land 9 straight rights, and the other fighter could land 9 strong head kicks. I would give more credit to the guy that landed the extra shot. I understand that’s an extreme, but the same concept. Even if it were much more lopsided they guy with lesser quantity often times is still doing a better job.
          If we went by strike quantity guys like Edgar and nick Diaz would never lose a decision. However I expect there are those that would want it that way.

  • onegoodnathan

    best fight in ufc history. it was Apollo vs Rocky in Rocky 1

  • Oswald Cobblepott

    Thumbs to the eye by Gus really amount to his only offense, no joke watch it again. He was elusive and quick did land some jabs but in a fight of technique he lost. You’ve gotta beat the champ not run along side him

    • MikeMcKinney

      Huh? I got it. Gus didn’t beat jones up? Jon just happen to have a severe allergic reaction in the middle of the fight that made him look like Will Smith in the movie “Hitch.”

    • Pete

      Sorry, but the evidence is clear. Gustafsson may not have had the most technical striking, but when his shots connected, they did some serious damage. Last time I checked, technique was not one of things judges look at when scoring a fight.

  • TK

    I wish more “really close” fights would end in draws. If it draws, do one more round, if not, let them rematch and fight again. The odds of consecutive draws must be in the millions; Edgar v Maynard 2 was a legit draw to me, the rematch ended in a KO; Machida v Shogun 1 was another legit draw to me (shogun shouldn’t have an L on his record for that fight), Machida got KO’d in the rematch; I also thought BJ v Edgar 1 was a draw, in the rematch, Edgar proved he was better.

    Those were all really close, competitive fights that I wanted to see again anyway. I know people will disagree, but no one is a loser in a fights like the ones mentioned.

    I guess that leads to how rounds should be scored. If after a round, a judge has no idea who “decisively” won said round, it should be a D on the score cards. It shouldn’t be a 10-9 “must” system. If a judge cannot discern a decisive winner, he/she shouldn’t feel pressured into thinking “well, I gotta give the round to someone.” Even if 4 out of 5 rounds are a D, that last round is “winner-take-all.”

    I also feel like the score for a round should be displayed for the audience and the corners between rounds. Imagine if a fighter “knew” he/she were losing going into the final round, I think it would be a major benefit for the sport. There would be no more guessing, no more “I thought I was winning.” Fighters would know after every round if they won it or not.

    My 2 cents anyway.

    • Ian Price

      That was an excellent post. I like the idea of having a winner for a round only if its obvious. They can easily do a “sudden death” overtime if its a draw at the end.

      Or somehow incorporate GSP ‘s recommendations to eliminate rounds. One ten minute fight. Then a 5-minute overtime if necessary. That’s more like a real fight anyway.

  • Pat Garett

    Alexander , great fighter , and sportsman!

  • Junior Thomas

    Dana looking for us to feel sorry for jones if they thought he had an image problem they have not seen anything yet.

  • mike

    I had Round 4 at 10-8 for Jones as Alex was hurt. Had Jones had the cardio to go at him, he’d have finished it there.
    Great fight though and a very close decision.

    • Cptmats

      How could you give Jones a 10-8 round when he got picked apart for four and a half minutes ? He didn’t land the elbow until the last 25 seconds.
      I still gave the round to Gus.

  • tyrone

    Referee is supposed to be impartial, yet mccarthy begged doctor not to stop fight.also gave jones warnings about opened hand continually without once deducting point.seems like mccarthey had money on this fight.

  • Mma master

    Jones landed more strikes. How can you say he didn’t win?

  • Adam

    Both men are warriors. I gained a lot of respect for Jones an Gus but I think it should have been a split not a unanimous decision.

  • joe

    I can’t understand what some people are thinking, Jones clearly outpointed Alex in round 2, I watched it a couple times to see what people are thinking, they’re obviously haters…and ofcourse he almost finished Alex in round 4, Alex was saved by the bell, and in round 5 Alex was a walking punching bag..those are 3 clear rounds for Jones, Alex fought well, but it wasn’t even close or debatable, I guess there are many who really hate Jones.

    • Ian Price

      I don’t really hate jones. But I was definitely cheering for Alex. That said, I don’t see how he out pointed Alex in round 2. two of the three judges gave Alex that round.

  • Chk70

    ***** ****** ******. The UFC has showed their ugly false greedy face and CHANGED their stats for the fight. Miraculously Jones now leads with 28 significant strikes. Against the 78 significant strikes lead Gustafsson used to have. This is a scandal. F**********k I so loved the UFC to see it now as it really is hurts as hell.

  • Jason Wallace

    The real winner of this fight was the whole sport of MMA. It made me proud just to be a fan.. For the record i had Gus winning by a round…just.

  • octawhat

    I think a key point that a lot of people are missing in this fight is that – if you put fighter against Jones of an equal size and a decent skill set – it nullifies a lot of the advantages Jones has.

    We had seen Bones rag doll fighters because of the insane size advantage. Also, with his reach – it means that for a smaller fighter to get inside, they have to take insane risks.

    Alex on the other hand didn’t – he could utilize distance and angles, and it was a more even affair. Also, Phil Davis helped him with his wrestling but Alex’s equal size contributed to him stuffing Jones (until he gassed later in the fight).

    Due to this fight – it may have given Jones a wake up call about venturing into the heavyweight division – where he would win a few fights, but I doubt he would fair well against Dos Santos (Boxing, takedown def, size) and Cain (Good at everything).

    Given that – all respect to Jones. To be champ, you need to take the title… Alex needed to make a statement to walk out of there with the belt, and just got too tired in rounds 4 & 5.

  • Mr Pete

    49-45 Gus 1-2-3-4 w/5th being draw

    “Head kicks” only one landed clean, no one who allegedly gets kicked in the head that many times stays conscious, obviously he did not.

    1 elbow top of head 30 second flurry does not win you the rd (Davis/Machida)

    a few grazing standing elbow jabs cut Gus under eye
    1 kick to body that DID hurt Gus
    5th round was more Gus being tired and Jon being desperate than Jon being the better fighter.

    • Ian Price

      I would agree with most of that

    • Advance*

      You’re an idiot

      • Cptmats

        you’re a tool !

  • macarrech

    I think this fight will make Jon Jones to rethink his plans to going heavyweight.

  • Oswald Cobblepott

    Most MMA fans are retarded in regards to scoring…Gustafson has become the new Nick Diaz

    • teroothe

      you sound retarded. did you read the scorecards released? it’s not accurate at all. it’s like one of the judges slept the entire fight, woke up and gave jones a 49-46 just because he’s p4p #1

  • David Moseley

    It is not a referees job to beg a doctor to keep the fight going. It is his or her job to protect the fighter and be there for his or her safety.

  • teroothe

    before anymore outside observer opinions are given, go read the official scorecard released, then watch the fight. the judges left out so much action it might as well be statistically a three round fight. 49-46 jones. that’s a f****** travesty