I was literally fuming after watching this fight.
I sat with my friend and his girl who follow MMA but are more casual fans, and one friend who actually dislikes MMA, and we were all actually angry once we heard the decision. I found this decision to be even worse than Sanchez/Kampmann or some of the recent Garcia 'aggression' decisions. Yeah, those sucked too. But THIS. Wow. I had to get up and take a walk. I actually missed the Crushing of 'The Crusher'. Little did I know that I would be even angrier once I read the actual scorecards the next day.
Listen. I know takedowns are scored too heavily and it's something we have to accept. In a very close round, a takedown can be the difference in winning the round. I get that and can accept that. That is in the case of a very even round though. One where effective striking/grappling are a split, leaving control to be the next deciding factor. That, I think, is somewhat acceptable. But in a round absolutely dominated in every other aspect by one fighter, takedowns are a moot point. Mousasi landed more strikes off of his back(Jardine landed 2 ground strikes in the first round and being generous, I think it was 5 in the second round. By the by, Mousasi landed 40 ground strikes.) and was able to effectively stand up after every takedown, nullifying Jardine's control.
The upkick was unfortunate, and probably only deserved a warning. But that's a ref's discretion and I was not particularly surprised he took a point once Jardine played it up. Big guy needed a breather and took advantage once fouled, I fully understand that.
Lots of fans seem to be saying it's just how the system works and it was scored correctly. Bullshit. Mousasi took Jardine apart during that fight. Granted, he looked like he had just woken up, and had very little interest in being there. I love that about watching him fight. He looks like he's daydreaming... about sleeping. His striking was crisp and efficient and effective and had Jardine running from him at multiple points. Several of the takedowns were out of desperation. I like Jardine, don't get me wrong, it's not his fault, but there is NO way he won that fight. I actually lost a little respect for him after seeing his post-fight interview with Ariel.
I'm all over the place, I know, but let me get to my real point.
Two judges scored Mousasi winning the first round. So... he should have won, right? That would be two guys scoring it 29-27(or 29-26 if you gave him a 10-8 round), leaving him the victor. Unless...
ABE BELARDO scored Keith Jardine winning the second round. How? I don't know. There were 2 takedowns, for a combined 41 seconds of Keith being in Mousasi's guard and literally being pummelled from the bottom position. But somehow, MOUSSASI still lost the round to JARDIN. Yes, that's how their names were spelled on the scorecards. Obviously dealing with rocket scientists with a huge interest in the sport, people.
This score is RIDICULOUS. I can't believe I am actually truly this angry. I was annoyed at judges giving Jardine the first, but the SECOND? Yeah, I know, deep breaths. This was a great card, and this was a great fight, and it's all tainted by some idiot that was busy playing 'Angry Birds' on his phone during the second round. I would usually never do an annoyed/angry fanpost. The few I do are funny or idealistic 'fun' posts, but I am completely surprised by the lack of anger at this decision in the MMA fan community. So many seem to accept it as 'well he should have defended the takedowns'.
No. Gegard Mousasi won that fight clearly. He was the more effective striker, more effective grappler on the ground, and clearly outclassed Keith Jardine in every aspect of the fight aside from takedowns. (Keith was actually 6/9 and Mousasi was 2/3... So they landed the same percentage of takedowns technically.)
Somebody fire Abe Belardo.