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Dana White’s final act with Keith Kizer & Steve Mazzagatti on The Ultimate Fighter

By Zach Arnold | May 21, 2014

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UFC hyped up a major controversy for Wednesday’s episode of The Ultimate Fighter series featuring BJ Penn & Frankie Edgar as coaches. It proved to be the final act for both Keith Kizer & Steve Mazzagatti in Nevada. After this incident, changes were promptly made to the Athletic Commission.

The show featured a Middleweight fight between Edgar fighter Ian Stephens and Penn fighter Roger Zapata. Dana White spent the last half of the show trashing Stephens as a lay-and-pray, human wet blanket with no intent to finish an opponent with effective submissions. He went out of his way to bury Stephens. Very Dana-like but still curious behavior.

Stephens and Zapata went to a draw after two rounds. Zapata was nailing Stephens with elbows to the head throughout the fight and Mazzagatti got on his case about it. They went to a third round to determine a winner. Mazzagatti took a point away from Zapata for an illegal elbow. Dana blew his gasket and started ranting & raving about how to properly officiate that kind of situation by giving a warning first. At the end of the third round, two of the judges had scored the round a 9-9 round but one judge scored it a 10-8 round in favor of Stephens.

When Mazzagatti announced the winner of the fight, he raised Zapata’s hand and called him “Ian Zapata.” Everyone went crazy. Mazzagatti tried a do-over and said “Roger Zapata” but the UFC editors made sure to leave the mistake in. White blew a gasket and said it was impossible for the judges to give Zapata the win given that he lost a point in the third round. Dana claims that since only one judge declared a winner after the third round that the judges were asked to pick an overall winner (PRIDE-style) and they picked Zapata. This situation reminded me of the odd scenario ESPN was pushing in Nevada during the early stages of their Boxcino tournaments where there was a proposed situation involving fans, via Facebook, being able to pick a winner in the 7th round of a fight if judges could not pick a tie-breaking winner.

Dana went on his usual rant about not leaving a decision in the hands of judges. He basically berated Mazzagatti and Kizer the same way he threw a fit over Ariel Helwani asking Chuck Liddell about his desire to fight Jon Jones.

Topics: MMA, Media, UFC, Zach Arnold | 6 Comments » | Permalink | Trackback |

6 Responses to “Dana White’s final act with Keith Kizer & Steve Mazzagatti on The Ultimate Fighter”

  1. Sundog says:

    Is Mazzagatti done in Nevada?

  2. david lebold says:

    What is the UFC rule book say about the third round “who ever wins this round is declared the winner” when it is a draw.
    I thought the fight was a draw, but that does not work for the UFC. These fights are exhibition fights and don’t actually count on fighters records so the only people it really matters that a winner was declared was Dana and the fighters.
    It would be interesting to ask Dana what the UFC rule is for these exhibitions ending in a draw. I suspect that “Nevada” did not come up with the “lets cirle a winner” idea. I would think it was more likely a shit storm from the tv production crew trying to decide what to do because the one thing they could not do is declare it a majority draw.
    The 10-8 final round score was reminiscent of the Hunt v Silva scoring.

  3. david lebold says:

    Of all the judging rants he has went on the couple horrible ones he(Dana) likes he is silent. The only thing Nevada got “wrong” was the 10-8 round, the final decision, majority draw/draw was correct. In my opinion. It seems like they used this and blew it out of proportion in order to get more revenue. Oh wait, I forgot this is a reality show, maybe Kim K can be a celebrity judge for TUF 36.

    • 45 Huddle says:

      Over the last year Dana White seems to be picking all of the wrong fights. He ignores big issues and goes crazy on small ones. He is losing sense of reality.

  4. Rob Maysey says:

    Isn’t that what bullies do?


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