by Damon Martin – MMAWeekly.com Protect yourselves at all times.
It’s a cardinal rule in MMA that every referee from every commission instructs the fighters before they clash. Rousimar Palhares dropped his guard for just an instant in his fight with Nate Marquardt on Wednesday night at UFC Fight Night 22. He paid for it when the Colorado fighter crushed him with a big punch on the ground, before finishing things up to get the first round TKO.
The reason for Palhares dropping his guard came after he attempted one of his patented heel hooks, and Marquardt immediately slipped out and pulled away. The Brazilian motioned towards referee Herb Dean as if he felt something slippery on Marquardt’s leg, but no stoppage occurred and he soon paid for that mistake.
Seeing the opening, Marquardt fired down like a missile at Palhares with a monstrous right hand. Palhares’ head snapped back like a rubber band, and Marquardt jumped on him with machine gun like shots.
It didn’t take long for Herb Dean to step in and stop the fight, declaring Marquardt the victor.
Following the fight, Marquardt was checked over by the ringside physician and referee again, and no evidence was found that he had any kind of greasing agent on his legs.
“They checked it before I fought. The thing is I came out really warm because I wanted a good sweat, I wanted to be slippery,” Marquardt commented when asked about the controversy.
Marquardt admitted that the way the fight ended wasn’t how thing were planned, but when he saw the door was open for him to take a shot at Palhares, he dropped down with a sledgehammer right hand, crushing him.
“I just saw an opportunity and jumped on it,” said Marquardt. “We kind of ended up in that little scramble position. That wasn’t part of the game plan, but I saw an opportunity and went for it.”
Bouncing back strong after a loss to current No. 1 contender Chael Sonnen in his last fight, Marquardt is once again in the mix at the top of the 185-pound division.