Max Griffin Vows to Never Fight in Brazil Again: “I Got Robbed”

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Feb 2, 2019; Fortaleza, CE, Brazil; Thiago "Pitbull" Alves (red gloves) vs. Max "Pain" Griffin (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Arena CFO. Mandatory Credit: Jason Silva-USA TODAY Sports

During the UFC Fortaleza prelims, Max Griffin and Thiago Alves took part in a highly competitive back-and-forth contest in front of a very partisan audience. Max Griffin walked away from the fight the loser and with a conviction that the audience were not the only people in attendance who were partisan.

“I’d love to run it back (with Alves) – but in America,” Griffin told MMA Junkie after the fight. “I’m not fighting out here again. I can’t. This is my career, and if you would’ve scored that fight 100 times, this would be the only place that I’m going to lose that fight. Period.” “I’ve never been so surprised in a fight.”

Max Griffin would then provide a detailed breakdown of how he arrived at his conclusion to support his argument. Griffin believes that while round 2 could understandably have gone to Alves, he struggles to accept how either the first or the final round could be scored for his opponent:

“We won Round 1 clearly – rocked him and dropped him a few times, and that should’ve been a 10-8. Second round, he brought it back to me … I was rocked for a second, but I put it on him again. He’s still getting stitches right now.

“I knew in the third round I had to put it on him. I outstruck him by like 40 significant strikes. And I outwrestled him the last round – took him down two or three times … won the third clearly. Even if you gave him the second round, even a 10-8, I still would’ve won the fight. I was upset at first. But I know in my heart I smashed him.”

According to Max Griffin, his victory over Alves was so obvious that even Alves himself accosted him and implied that he, too, was a witness of a robbery. And what’s more, Alves’s coach Mike Brown saw the same thing according to Griffin:

“After the fight, (Alves) ran into me and said, ‘Ya know, we’re in Fortaleza.’ He knew he didn’t win,” Griffin said. “His coach, Mike Brown, said he didn’t win. I’ve never felt I won so much – that’s why I’m not upset. It’s not like, ‘Oooh, I got robbed.’ We beat him. We smashed him. Every single person here saw the fight, and no person thinks I lost that fight. It is what it is.”

Do you believe more fighters should refuse to fight in Brazil in fear of partisan judging? Or is Max Griffin overreacting?