Sports: The UFC is under fire after Daniel Cormier was kept in the octagon for an interview shortly after being knocked out
The former champion looked wobbly after taking a kick to the face from Jon Jones, but he still was interviewed before leaving the Octagon for medical attention
On Saturday, Jon Jones knocked out Daniel Cormier in the third round and claimed the UFC light-heavyweight championship.
While the fight delivered for fans looking for action in the octagon, the immediate aftermath of the bout left much to be desired, specifically with regard to the health concerns of the athletes.
The first controversy came when some questioned whether the fight should have been called sooner. Cormier had been holding his own and probably had won one of the first two rounds on some scorecards, but once Jones caught him with the kick it was immediately apparent to anyone watching that Cormier was dazed and vulnerable.
Jones chased Cormier down and began raining punches down on him until the referee stopped the fight.
After the fight, referee John McCarthy tweeted that upon watching replays, he wished he had stopped the fight two punches earlier. But Cormier himself would later say of McCarthy in an Instagram post that he was "thankful for the time you gave me to try and defend myself and stay in the fight.” He added, “You are the best in the business for a reason."
But even more polarizing was how Cormier was treated after the loss. After taking that straight shot to the face that initially slowed him, Cormier received several more blows to the head before the ref stepped in. Once back in his corner, he was addressed for a moment by trainers and suits.
As Deadspin noted, as one of the cameras stayed on Cormier, it appeared to show that he was blocked at least twice from exiting the octagon where he could've received medical attention.
It seems Cormier was refused exit so he could be present while Jones was announced as the new champion and, later, be interviewed by Joe Rogan.
In the interview, Cormier was clearly struggling to get words out. Tears were streaming down his face, reminiscent of when Luke Kuechly was carted off the football field in tears last season after taking a devastating hit.
Rogan had previously said he would no longer be interviewing fighters after they had been knocked out in a fight, after a similar situation occurred last September with Alistair Overeem.
Rogan later posted a series of tweets apologizing for the interview on Sunday.