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Pedro Munhoz facing discipline in Nevada for UFC 235 cage celebration

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

A UFC bantamweight top contender is facing a sanction in Nevada for his post-fight celebration at UFC 235.

Pedro Munhoz is currently temporarily suspended by the Nevada Athletic Commission (NAC) and that suspension is up for an extension, pending a hearing or settlement agreement, at the next NAC meeting Wednesday in Las Vegas, per the agenda posted to the commission’s website Thursday.

Munhoz is facing discipline for his celebration on top of the cage after knocking out Cody Garbrandt at UFC 235 earlier this month at T-Mobile Arena, NAC executive director Bob Bennett confirmed with MMA Fighting. MMAjunkie’s John Morgan was the first to report the news.

“Our inspectors were specifically advised by me to make sure the fighters knew they were not authorized to jump out of the cage,” Bennett said.

The policy is in place to protect a fighter from injuring himself or herself or others in the area, Bennett said. It doesn’t have anything to do with the UFC 229 post-fight brawl involving Conor McGregor and Khabib Nurmagomedov, Bennett said.

This is a policy that was put into place long before that and was also an issue with Justin Gaethje did a back flip off the cage after beating Michael Johnson at the TUF 25 Finale in 2017. Other commissions have also enforced a similar rule. It’s unclear if Munhoz will face a full suspension or just a fine from the NAC.

NAC rules state: “An unarmed combatant shall not leave the ring or, if the contest or exhibition is being held in a fenced area, the fenced area, during any period of rest that follows a period of unarmed combat.”

Munhoz (18-3, 1 NC) knocked out Garbrandt for the biggest win of his career March 2. He has now won three in a row and put his name among top contenders for the now vacant UFC bantamweight title, with T.J. Dillashaw relinquishing the belt following a positive drug test. Munhoz, 32, has won seven of eight fights overall.

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