Written by Derek Moody, September 21, 2016, at 12:12 a.m.
Derek Brunson (16-3 7-1 UFC) continues to dominate the middleweight division with his piercing fists. Riding a five fight win streak, the 2nd longest in the division, Brunson commands attention. After his first round knockout of Uriah Hall last weekend Brunson was able to show that he belongs with the best in the weight class.
Hall has only seen defeat via knockout once prior to former UFC middleweight champ Chris Weidman. Hall has fought some tough competition who weren’t even close to finishing him which makes this win a lot more impactful for Brunson.
After a quick first round finish boo’s erupted during the reading of the decision. The boo’s shouldn’t have been directed towards Brunson as he performed perfectly. We’ve seen it happen time and time again where a fight is stopped prematurely and the fighter receives criticism instead of the referee who’s deciding to make the call they think is right.
The conclusion to a four year beef may not have played out as expected for Hall but it was more than satisfying for Brunson. A knockout in the 1st round during the co main event after all this build up is fitting for the run he has been on in the last five fights.
Good or Bad Stoppage?
The initial punch floored Hall which certainly had him on dream street momentarily but the follow up ground and pound shots didn’t connect at all. Brunson was smart about it by swinging wildly like a madman because when it’s happening live it appears that actual damage is taking place.
Now because those follow up shot’s didn’t land Hall should have been giving time to recover. Situations like these usually require them some time to play out because history has shown that sometimes someone can temporarily be unconscious and then regain consciousness en route to winning the fight.
A prime example is Cheick Kongo vs Pat Barry which is still the craziest comeback in mma history. Kongo was in much deeper water than Uriah Hall and was able to recover resulting in a knockout win.
Herb Dean doesn’t make many mistakes during the period of a calendar year so his ruling is justified. Either way, the stoppage shouldn’t negatively affect Brunson because he has no control over what the referee ends up doing. Brunson’s job was to convince the referee the fight should be stopped with non stop uncontested ground and pound.
He did exactly that, it wasn’t until the slow motion replay that everyone realized the shots were missing. It’s hard to fault an experienced referee that’s looking out for everyone’s well being.
Verdict: Good Stoppage, Hall did recover but that was after Herb Dean pulled Brunson off of him. It would be a bad stoppage if Hall didn’t grab Herb Dean and he actually attempted to grab Brunson. Early stoppage is out of the question period. You can not defend yourself by grabbing a referee. That doesn’t defend your case of a wrongful stoppage by any means.
The Next Move for Brunson
Brunson has clearly put the middleweight division on notice that his power is very legit. He lobbied for a title shot during his post fight interview but at the moment it just isn’t realistic. That doesn’t mean he can’t beat the champ or the title challenger it just means he’s not next in line.
If Brunson is able to land a top 5er and finishes him then a title eliminator seems viable. If unable to schedule a top 5er then he needs to somehow schedule a fight with Anderson Silva. He could use that as another route to the title but he’d have to win convincingly.