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CABMMA overturns UFC Sao Paulo bout to a no-contest

Francimar Barroso appealed his TKO loss at UFC Sao Paulo to the Brazilian Commission arguing the end of the fight stemmed from an illegal headbutt by Darrent Stewart.

MMA: UFC Fight Night-Barroso vs Mutapcic Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

Francimar Barroso suffered a controversial first-round TKO loss to Darren Stewart in the first fight of UFC Fight Night 100, in Sao Paulo, Brazil. A headbutt from Stewart appeared to injure Barroso, but went unseen by the referee. Immediately after the bout, Barroso and his team, Nova Uniao, filed a complaint. They argued that the accidental headbutt from Stewart was a decisive factor to end the fight.

Since referee Eduardo Herdy didn't acknowledge the strike, the Brazilian Athletic Commission (CABMMA) initially ruled that it wasn’t instrumental in the end of the fight, which is why it was ruled a TKO win. But upon review - and following Barroso’s complaint - the CABMMA have decided to overturn the bout to a no-contest as they explained in a statement released this morning.

"After the time out, and normal/event replay shown on the big screen and referee identifying it as a contact of head to face, would have given a strong warning to the opponent, advising him to be more careful with clinching attempts using ‘‘head in’’ first movements/contacts," he continued. "If not identified as it, but rather a normal blow (elbow, punch) and understood that the athlete was trying to misguide the referee to break that moment, the referee would have called the result as a TKO or desistance, since it was the fighter that signaled to the referee to interrupt the moment. But for this case, it should be considered as an unintentional foul."

Francimar Barroso, who was coming off a submission loss to Nikita Krylov and could be facing a UFC release with two stoppage losses in a row, was relieved to hear the news.

"I’m really happy," Barroso told MMA Fighting. "You have no idea how upset I was because of what that referee did. He was right in front of me and no way he missed that headbutt. I was so upset I couldn’t sleep and eat after that fight. It was so unfair because he saw everything and didn’t do anything. I’d never be over it."

Referee Eduardo Herdy is becoming quite infamous for his slips inside the Octagon. He also stopped a fight between Drew Dober and Leandro Silva, in March 2015, believing that Dober had passed out from a relatively loose guillotine choke. That result was overturned shortly afterward as well.

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