Herb Dean has responded to criticisms of his UFC on ESPN 14 officiating.
Dean came under fire over two of his stoppages at UFC on ESPN 14. Commentators Dan Hardy and Paul Felder expressed their dismay with Dean’s stoppage in the heavyweight bout between Tanner Boser and Raphael Pessoa, as they felt the referee jumped in a bit late. Things got worse with Francisco Trinaldo vs. Jai Herbert. Trinaldo knocked Herbert down with a punch and it appeared as if Herbert couldn’t intelligently defend himself as Trinaldo even hesitated to fire off more punches. Trinaldo landed some more shots before the fight was stopped, which enraged Hardy.
Herb Dean Responds To Criticism Of UFC on ESPN 14 Stoppages
In an Instagram video, Dean addressed the critics and insisted that he didn’t stop Trinaldo vs. Herbert too late (h/t MMAFighting).
“There’s a fight that some people said could have been stopped earlier, think it was stopped late. By no means was that a late stoppage,” Dean said in a video posted to his Instagram page.
“Anyone who believes or not is maybe just following because someone with a microphone says it’s a [bad] stoppage. But if you know anything about fighting, a fighter got hurt, fighters get rocked all the time but we’re looking at his actions. He’s tracking his opponent. He knows where his opponent is. He’s put both arms in between him and his opponent. He’s lifted his leg up, head off the mat. He’s doing everything I can ask for him to do to stay in that fight. There wasn’t a bad stoppage.”
There was an incident between Dean and Hardy following the Trinaldo vs. Herbert bout. The UFC is looking into the matter. Without naming Hardy, Dean criticized the UFC color commentator for yelling out “stop the fight” when he wasn’t qualified to do so.
“If you open your mouth and yell the words ‘stop the fight’ it could easily be mistaken for the people who are officially qualified to yell stop the fight,” Dean said. “It should never be done.”
The qualified people that Dean refers to are the doctor and a fighter’s corner. Hardy issued a statement before Dean’s video was posted, talking about the dangers of referees stopping bouts too late. Hardy also admitted that he is passionate about the safety of the fighters.