City Kickboxing head coach Eugene Bareman went into further detail about his mindset on the stoppage that saw his pupil Israel Adesanya dethroned by Alex Pereira.
Last year at UFC 281, Adesanya had hoped to add a sixth successful defense of the middleweight title to his résumé and pull one back in his combat sports head-to-head series with Pereira, which sat at 2-0 in the Brazilian’s favor following a pair of kickboxing matches.
Unfortunately for “The Last Stylebender,” he exited the Octagon inside Madison Square Garden with the 185-pound gold no longer in his possession and with a three-result deficit to “Poatan.”
That conclusion came about in spite of a strong performance from Adesanya, who was up through four rounds and just minutes away from another victory on the scorecards. Late in the day, however, Pereira found a home for his powerful left hook.
After being visibly rocked, Adesanya stumbled along the cage whilst Pereira continued his onslaught. Marc Goddard eventually stepped in as the Nigerian-New Zealander dipped his head, deeming that he was no longer intelligently defending himself.
In the immediate aftermath, Adesanya appeared to protest. And while he later maintained that he could have recovered and seen out the final exchanges of the contest, he noted that he’d accepted the stoppage owing to the view of his corner.
Bareman Explains Support Of Adesanya/Pereira Stoppage
During an appearance on Submission Radio, City Kickboxing’s Eugene Bareman looked back on the moment that brought one of his gym’s leading fighter’s reign atop the middleweight mountain to an end.
Discussing his thoughts on the stoppage, which drew mixed reactions following the November 12 event, Bareman highlighted the inability of many in the MMA fanbase to grasp the impact that blows from a fellow professional can have on a fighter’s health.
With that in mind, and the growing understanding that research is providing on the permanent damage caused by the type of punches thrown by elite strikers, Bareman explained the important of prioritizing safety.
“It has a lot to do with (the fact that) the large majority of the fanbase that drives the sport has never taken or received a punch from a professional fighter in a professional environment, ever,” Bareman said. “This is not someone walking up in the street and punching you, this is someone who’s trained themselves for the vast majority of their life to generate force and send it into one particular focus area. It’s not a normal thing.
“The body, ultimately, is not designed to take blunt force trauma like that. People’s expectations on teams, and families, and friends, and fighters — it’s ridiculous,” Bareman added. “Unfortunately, what’s becoming more clear as time goes on, and as we invest more time and money into studying this, every punch we receive to the head looks like it does permanent damage and irreversible damage. So we have to take it very seriously.”
While he did admit that a recovery and comeback wasn’t off the table for Adesanya, the City Kickboxing founder suggested that after weighing both sides, he believes further damage to “The Last Stylebender” was the more likely scenario.
“There was a chance that Israel may have made some sort of recovery and carried on. But at the end of the day, I deemed it… that there was a greater chance that he may have been hurt even worse than he was,” Bareman stated. “That’s why I said I was happy with the stoppage. At the end of the day, we live to fight another day. Israel seems to be healthy, happy, and enthusiastic to get on with business.”
Bareman’s comments certainly echo the post-fight remarks of Goddard, who took to social media in the midst of some criticism to thank those who understood his role as third third man inside the cage.
Last night at UFC 283, Goddard officiated the main event once again, this time between light heavyweights Glover Teixeira and Jamahal Hill.
Toward the end of the fight, as Teixeira underwent excessive damage, the commentating team wondered aloud if the fight should have been stopped. Although Goddard gave Teixeira a wide breadth to recover, the Brazilian would ultimately lose to Hill and retire after the rendering of the official decision.
What do you make of Eugene Bareman’s take on Marc Goddard’s stoppage in Israel Adesanya vs. Alex Pereira at UFC 281?
Please provide transcription credit with a link to this article if you use any of these quotes.