The UFC 234 was filled with drama and controversy.
On just hours notice, Robert Whittaker, who was scheduled to defend his title against Kelvin Gastelum, pulled out of the main event due to a reported injury.
The middleweight champion was one of the biggest reasons why the UFC 234 tickets were sold out just minutes after they were put on sale, and fans were furious upon learning about his decision to withdraw from the title fight.
Good thing, the Israel Adesanya vs Anderson Silva fight saved the day as both fighters put on a classic showdown to the delight of the Aussie fans.
But before the middleweight pair delivered an instant classic, a controversial decision by the referee, Marc Goddard, drew flak on social media, while the losing fighter, Sam Alvey insisted that it was an early stoppage.
In the post-fight presser, UFC president Dana White admitted that the referee did a lousy job officiating the main card opener.
— Melbourne Informer (@melbourneinform) February 10, 2019
Australian Jimmy Crute tussled with Sam Alvey in a light heavyweight bout in the opening match of the UFC 234 main card.
Crute made quick of his visitor as he coasted to a first round stoppage win, his tenth in his professional career and his second straight at UFC.
With two and a half minutes remaining in the opening round, the Australian fighter dropped Alvey with a powerful right hand, which sent the American to the deck dazed and confused.
Crute thought the fight was over and walked away, but the gutsy American recovered only to be battered with solid punches during a scramble.
But Alvey refused to give up as he tried to defend the onslaught, but referee Marc Goddard stopped the fight in the dying moments of the first round, giving the win to the Australian fighter.
Alvey believed that the call was too early while Crute said that his opponent was done when he was hit with a takedown and head kick.
— MMAFighting.com (@MMAFighting) February 10, 2019
“I wanted a walk-off, but I should’ve just jumped on him,” said Crute.
“I feel like he was done. He had that wobbly strength. Of course, you’re gonna say you feel good.”
“He’s known for his good takedown defence, but as soon as I hit him with the takedown and head kick, I knew he was done.”
While the Australian was celebrating his win, Alvey went ballistic as he tried to contest the call to Goddard.
Watch it below:
— Submission Radio (@SubmissionRadio) February 10, 2019
UFC boss Dana White sided with the American fighter during the post-fight presser, claiming that Goddard really did a bad job in that light heavyweight bout.
“The ref screwed that up, too. The ref jumped in there and (Crute) thought the ref was breaking it up.”
“The ref did a really, really bad job. Real poor refereeing in that fight.”
“When something like that happens, it could’ve caused Crute the fight, because if Alvey got back up – and then (Goddard) goes to stop it too soon, then he stops it too early, in my opinion.”
“It happens sometimes, and it sucks for Sam.”
It wasn’t the first time Alvey questioned Goddard for an early stoppage.
The controversial referee also called the shots in his last fight against Antonio Rogerio Nogueira, where he lost via stoppage, which he believed was called early.
(Featured Image Source: YouTub/Submission Radio and Twitter/USA Sports)