It seems like there is nothing Rousimar Palhares can do that doesn't involve some sort of controversy. Notorious for his willingness to bend the rules when in the cage for MMA and his bizarre mental lapses, the accomplished grappler isn't exactly an angel on the grappling mat either.
At the 2011 ADCC Palhares got off to a less than ideal start by missing weight but was given a second chance at which point he hit the mark. Then, in his second round match with David Avellan, Palhares' signature weirdness popped up again. From KJ Gould's live blog right here on Bloody Elbow:
Palhares vs David Avellan. Palhares with a big takedown, then a heelhook for a win. Palhares goes to hug Avellan and it's treated like he's attacking Avellan. Palhares trying to explain. Apparently the match is being restarted because the submission was out of bounds. More bonkers stuff with Palhares. he must be the Simple Jack of Submission Grappling. Try to restart from heelhook position. Avellan tries to spin out and Palhares kneebars the shit out of him. Could be an injury. Palhares wins ... again, in the same match.
David Avellan's brother, Marcos, explained the situation on his Facebook page:
What happened with the heel hook and the reason my brother was upset was because Palhares pulled a similar stunt like he did in the UFC.
He threw the heel hook and my brother was rolling and went out of bounds. The referee yelled "STOP" and told them to both stop. Palhares stopped for a brief moment - and my brother then stopped as well... then all of a sudden Palhares started cranking on it again, despite the referee continuing to say stop afterwards, with my brother yelling, and popped his leg three or four times.
It was a weird situation right after... Palharas started to celebrate, thinking the match was over, and came over to hug my brother, but as he hugged my brother, he slapped him across the head really hard. So one arm went out for a hug, the other went for a slap on the head (lol). My brother was naturally pissed by the heel hook and the slap.
Palharas seemed genuinely confused, both about his cranking after the ref said stop and by the rejection of his post fight "hug". I think he was sincerely genuine, I just think he is crazy, like bi-polar or something.
As if that wasn't enough strange behavior from Palhares, this morning he got into more trouble in his -88kg finals match with Andre Galvao. From KJ's live blog:
Galvao gets both hooks in but then it appears Palhares pulled his thumb back to break a grip and that's illegal. Referee pauses the match to hear Galvao's complaint and warns Palhares. They resume position and Galvao complains again about Palhares while Palhares says he's not going anything wrong.
They get back to their feet and it appears they're in the scoring zone now. Actually against were scored earlier and it's currently 9-2 Galvao. Palhares is now being warned for clubbing Galvao in the clinch but unsure if he's lost a point. Palhares is either a dirty fighter, or he's just Lennie from Of Mice and Men.
Abnormal is just the normal when it comes to Palhares.