Carlos Condit File Photo: Sherdog.com
Not one to hold his tongue in regards to poor officiating, UFC President Dana White sided with referee Kevin Dornan and his decision to stop the Carlos Condit-Rory MacDonald bout with seven seconds to go at UFC 115 “Liddell vs. Franklin” on Saturday at the General Motors Place in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.
Down two rounds on the scorecards, Condit fed MacDonald a steady diet of damaging ground-and-pound until Dornan stepped in on the 20-year-old Canadian’s behalf. The final bell was just around the corner.
“I’m the first one to blast a referee or a judge for making bad calls,” White said. “In my opinion, referees aren’t looking at the time. They could give a s--t what time it is or how much time is left. They’re there to protect the fighters.”
Dornan fulfilled his duty, according to White.
“Rory’s a young guy,” he said. “He’s got a lot of fights ahead of him. He took a lot of damage in that last round. I didn’t have any problem with the stoppage. It’s unfortunate when a fight stops with seconds left, but you won’t hear me bitching about that one.”
In his first fight since suffering a career-threatening hand injury, Condit made the most of his late surge. The former World Extreme Cagefighting welterweight champion caught MacDonald with a stinging right hand early in round three and overwhelmed the previously unbeaten British Columbia native when the two hit the ground. Elbows, punches and hammerfists ruined MacDonald’s homecoming.
“In that third round, I just came out guns blazing and caught him, and I don’t think he ever really recovered from that,” said Condit, who was on the receiving end of a spirited talk from trainer Greg Jackson in between rounds one and two. “I was able to implement my top game and really do a lot of damage with elbows and standing-to-ground punches.
“I really just put the pressure on him because I knew I was probably down two rounds,” he added. “I wasn’t too keen on losing a decision.”
Even in defeat, MacDonald won over White with his skills and fortitude. The youngest fighter on the active UFC roster has a fan in the man at the top.
“The kid looked amazing,” White said. “He’s such a young guy. This was a title fight for this kid. [Condit] is a guy who held a title, who’s been around for a long time, who has tons of big-fight experience. That kid had a lot on him tonight [fighting in his hometown]. He looked fantastic. I expect big things from him. He’s got plenty of time to work his way back up the ladder.”