Martin Buday was well ahead on the scorecards at UFC Vegas 51 when he dropped an illegal elbow down onto the back of Chris Barnett’s head.
But despite being the one who committed the fight-ending foul, Buday still left victorious.
After Barnett fell to his knees and prompted an end to the contest, veteran referee Dan Miragliotta deemed Buday’s elbow to be accidental. That sent the result to the hands of the judges, as more than two rounds had passed. Buday subsequently ended up sweeping the judges’ scorecards to win a technical decision, much to the protests of Barnett.
Miragliotta’s decision ignited a firestorm of debate on social media about the definition of an accidental foul and whether the fight should’ve resulted in a disqualification win for Barnett. Check out reaction to the controversial finish from UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou, light heavyweight contender Jamahal Hill, and more notable names.
30-27— UFC on BT Sport (@btsportufc) April 16, 2022
Martin Buday scores a technical unanimous decision victory at #UFCVegas51 pic.twitter.com/5yu3YcINxk
Clearly intentional ♂️— Francis Ngannou (@francis_ngannou) April 16, 2022
So if I get up in a fight all I have to do is land an illegal shot so the dr stops it and I win? Hmm interesting!!— Jamahal Hill (@JamahalH) April 16, 2022
Clearly intentional!— Junior Dos Santos ️➕ (@junior_cigano) April 17, 2022
I don’t know what kind shit is going in on those guys heads. and the referee saying it was an accident. BS.
Elbow on the back of the head is never, never an accident. Why it’s so hard for those *** apply the f rules https://t.co/DsS1kYrE91
How is that not intentional? Seriously. The man has his back turned against the cage, what else could he be aiming at? #UFCVegas51— Chris Curtis The Action Man (@Actionman513) April 16, 2022
Bro... the Ref literally just watched Barnett take like 4 elbows to the back of the head... wtf man.#UFCVegas51— Chris Curtis The Action Man (@Actionman513) April 16, 2022
Not Good….— Alan Jouban (@AlanJouban) April 16, 2022
That was intensional— C H T O V E R A (@chitoveraUFC) April 16, 2022
"Scar card" #UFCVegas51— Mike Jackson, Esq. (@TheTruthJackson) April 16, 2022
Damn Star cards...#UFCVegas51— Chris Curtis The Action Man (@Actionman513) April 16, 2022