MMA and all other kinds of combat sports have always been clouded by poor or highly controversial judging or the referees making mistakes. The highly infamous Brazilian referee Mario Yamasaki has particularly often come under scrutiny for his poor and extremely questionable officiating skills. However, there are certain referees such as ‘Big’ John McCarthy or even Leon Roberts who are usually away from controversies and tend to make the right call. However, in the main-event of UFC Fight Night 129, a.k.a UFC Chile, the officiating of Leon Roberts was surrounded by controversies. Roberts was even verbally slammed by former UFC welterweight champion Matt Serra who claimed that he cost Demian Maia the fight.
Serra recently made an appearance on UFC Unfiltered. Serra claimed that Maia had trapped Usman in an advantageous position on the ground, though the referee made the fighters stand-up. He further stated that the referee “fucked up”. Here’s what he said:
They weren’t just holding each other up against the cage. It might have looked like it but Kamaru had an over hook and that over hook was the only thing stopping Demian Maia from taking that back. It was a very awkward position where [Kamaru Usman] was not getting out of that. The only way he could look to free himself was to let go and expose his back. Just in the montage before he walks out look at how many times he’s strangled guys, powerful wrestlers like Rick Story, gutty, gritty guys who do not tap easily like Carlos Condit or Matt Brown. This is not a coincidence. So for [Roberts] to take away his one shot, Leon Roberts, you should be ashamed of yourself and I think you possibly could have cost him the fight. Leon, you fucked up, Leon. You really did. Are you getting influenced because you’re maybe hearing some boos in the crowd or something? Your job is not to make this shit entertaining.