Saint Preux entered the second round of the fight clearly down on the scorecards, but he was able to land a takedown on Boser and get into side control.
As the Canadian fighter tried to get out of the position, it appeared as if Boser may have grabbed the fence, which led referee Jason Herzog to come in and put his hand on the back of Saint Preux – quite possibly before Boser stepped back – and allowed the fight to continue.
Boser was able to get back to his feet and land a big knee in the clinch as well as a flurry of punches before Herzog stepped in to wave the fight off over the downed Saint Preux.
Subsequent replays appeared to exonerate Boser on a fence grab. But Saint Preux, after speaking with his head coach and manager, has made the decision to file an appeal with the Nevada Athletic Commission based on the finishing sequence.
“I felt the ref put his hand on my back, which is only done to pause the action or call a finish,” Saint Preux said in a statement to MMA Fighting. “I slightly paused and then the tide turned.
“We will be protesting and requesting a no-contest.”
Boser’s reps didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.
Barring a positive drug test, the Nevada Athletic Commission has the ability to overturn a bout’s official result in the cage of collusion, a scoring error, or a misapplication of the rules by the referee, though it almost always defaults to the referee’s discretion to make calls.
As it currently stands, “OSP” has been finished in two straight fights and has been defeated in three of his past four. Boser, who recently signed a new four-fight deal with the UFC, gets back in the win column after snapping a two-fight skid, which included a controversial split decision loss to Ilir Latifi three weeks earlier at UFC Vegas 28.