Sean O’Malley beat Kris Moutinho from pillar to post and appeared to be well on his way to a lopsided decision win at UFC 264. Then referee Herb Dean interrupted the carnage, and the internet erupted.
Fighters gave Moutinho high praise and let Dean have it for waving off the fight at 4:33 of the third and final round of the pay-per-view opener at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. O’Malley landed 230 significant strikes to Moutinho’s 70, per UFC stats, but his colleagues were largely unhappy with the result.
Here’s how fighters reacted to the fight at UFC 264.
Let’s go Moutinho that’s how you fight— Cowboy Cerrone (@Cowboycerrone) July 11, 2021
Dumbass stoppage— Bryce Mitchell (@ThugnastyMMA) July 11, 2021
You wait for 30 seconds left!!! He earned the right to finish that fight— Belal Muhammad (@bullyb170) July 11, 2021
Dang Herb let him get his ass whipped for 14.5 min then calls it with less than 30 left.— Funky (@Benaskren) July 11, 2021
RESPECT kid had so much heart didn’t deserve that stoppage he was in it! Wow big fan of Moutinho UFC264— Jeremy Stephens (@LiLHeathenMMA) July 11, 2021
Herb has to let the kid go for his money smh #UFC264— Justin Gaethje (@Justin_Gaethje) July 11, 2021
I’d have loved to see him finish! One of the worst beatings I’ve ever seen but man kid fought with so much heart. He deserved to finish!— Daniel Cormier (@dc_mma) July 11, 2021