By Zach Arnold | December 10, 2008
Update: I assumed that Spike was airing this on a delay on the West Coast per usual, but much to my surprise they aired this live on the West Coast with no delay.
Speaking of the main event… where did Yoshida go after the KO? Did he get stretchered out? The cameras didn’t show…
Addendum: After the Koscheck interview, Spike TV went to a commercial. Coming back from the commercial, Mike Goldberg is doing a wrap-up and a set-up for showing a dark match. While panning the cage, on camera you can clearly see several doctors and attendants over Yoshida on the cage mat. I can’t tell if they were stretchering him out or what kind of medical assistance they were giving to him. I’m not down with UFC and Spike TV not updating their fans on what happened to Yoshida.
With 5 minutes left to go on the Spike TV telecast, Mike Goldberg and Joe Rogan are talking about Fightforthetroops.com. They talked about Mike Swick’s dominating win over Jonathan Goulet and they even showed the knockout of Yoshida a few times. Koscheck was shown signing autographs. You guessed it — there was no update on the medical condition of Yoshida. Nope. Nothing about the health and safety of the ‘random Japanese guy’ who main-evented the show. Goldberg went on-and-on about how what UFC presented tonight was ’sports, it’s not real life.’
There was a horrible irony about the way UFC handled the Yoshida situation on television. They dedicated the entire show to the Intrepid Fallen Heroes fund, which is a charity to help out soldiers who have suffered from brain trauma. Yet, Yoshida suffers what was no doubt a concussion (he was on the ground for at least seven minutes after the KO happened — Koscheck’s knockout was a traumatic blow to the head), and UFC acted as if he didn’t exist — no updates on his medical condition, no cameras to check on his situation, nothing. UFC wants to be treated like a real sport by the sports media, and yet they have shown over the course of several years that when a fighter gets brutally knocked out to not show what happened to the fighter afterwards or give updates on the fighter’s health status (unlike all pro-leagues like the NFL, NBA, etc.). When the Yoshida knockout happened on the Spike TV telecast, there was over 20+ minutes left of TV time to fill. UFC chose to air a dark match (Steve Bruno vs. Johnny Rees). When Goldberg and Rogan did their final wrap-up, they had over five minutes of TV time left. There was no mention of Yoshida whatsoever, other than the brutal knockout by Koscheck being shown over and over again.
I would be interested in seeing other MMA writers comment on this situation (either in favor or against UFC’s policy of the way they cover fighters brutally knocked out on TV/PPV).
There will be critics who will whine about me bringing up this issue, claiming that I’m manufacturing a ‘controversy.’ Nothing could be further from the truth. My thoughts here in this post was real-time commentary on a show that I was watching. If the best ‘defense’ someone online can come up to this situation is ‘you’re just looking to criticize UFC while they’re doing a charity show,’ then that’s a pretty weak defense.
Update: This UFC.com story says that Yoshida was stretchered out, and later added that he was released from the hospital. CBS Sports is reporting that Corey Hill is out for 12-18 months with a broken tibia. His fight is the first fight available for viewing at ufc.com.
For those of you claiming that I am ‘whining’ here, read this response.