John Redmond and Charlie Ward’s fight was the talk of the MMA world for all the wrong reasons Friday night when Conor McGregor scaled the fence in celebration with his SBG teammate, Ward, following his knockout in the final second of the first round.
McGregor shoved referee Marc Goddard and slapped a Bellator official who tried to push him from the cage on his second attempt to gain entry.
At one stage, while pursuing Goddard across the canvas, McGregor appeared to cause the defeated Redmond to stumble. Redmond seemed to be still feeling the affect of the left hand that sent him down at the end of the first round.
According to Irish veteran Redmond, McGregor’s behavior overshadowed the fight. He also believes that the UFC lightweight champion’s appearance had an impact on the fight not going into a second round.
“We had a good fight in there and I think him jumping into the cage overshadowed the whole fight and the whole event,” Redmond told MMA Fighting.
“I don’t want to piss and moan about it. I don’t want anyone taking pity on me or anything like that. I didn’t get the win, but I showed I was in charge of the fight up until that big shot at the end of the round.
“I think the fight was far from finished and all the madness that was going on in there didn’t help me getting a chance to go out for the second.”
After initially leaving the cage, McGregor did an about turn and marched back to the stage shouting, “that was a f*cking stoppage”, suggesting that there was a debate as to whether the fight would enter the second round.
McGregor shouted "that was a fucking stoppage" and ran back towards the cage. Goddard then ejected him pic.twitter.com/OImxiwq7f7— Peter Carroll (@PetesyCarroll) November 10, 2017
Redmond insisted that Goddard wanted the fight to continue, but the Mohegan Sun commission, who oversaw Bellator 187, decided that the fight should not go on. For Redmond, the “circus” that McGregor created in the ring forced the commission to put an end to the fight as quickly as possible.
“I think there was a lot of panic in the ring as soon as he got in there. I think everybody was just concerned with getting him out of there as quickly as possible,” Redmond said.
“Marc Goddard was going to let the fight go into the second, but then the commission seemed to overrule his decision. I think that decision was swayed because of the circus and madness that was going down at the time. It was just a mad scene. I’ve never seen anything like it.”
Redmond revealed that McGregor briefly spoke of his respect for both Redmond and Team Ryano head coach, Andy Ryan, during his explosive appearance in the Bellator cage.
“After it he said, ‘I respect you, John’ and, ‘I respect you, Andy’, I guess after seeing the thing with Artem in Poland last month it looks like emotions have boiled over a few times for him,” he said.
Redmond feels a rematch is the right thing to do based on how the fight was brought to a close.
“I felt like I was bullying Charlie in there,” Redmond said. “He can say what he wants after the fight, but look at the footage. He took me down, I used my jiu-jitsu to get back to my feet and I felt I dominated him for the whole fight.
“I’m not trying to say that the shot didn’t catch me, but by no means was I out. It was right at the end of the round and I think I deserved to go into the second. Maybe if that madness didn’t go down I would have got that.
“A rematch is the right way to go with this and I think after all the interest our first fight generated it would be something Bellator would like to do.”