Photo: Austin Hubbard and Max Rohskopf exchange shots Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC
At UFC Fight Night: Blaydes vs. Volkov, the preliminary card kicked off in a controversial fashion.
Lightweight Max Rohskopf took on Austin Hubbard in the first fight of the evening. However, Rohskopf called off the fight after only the second round. Calling off a bout has always been highly taboo, but there is more to the decision than meets the eye.
To start, Rohskopf took this fight with only five days’ notice. As such, he entered with an immediate disadvantage of working through a rapid weight cut and a turf-toe injury. Although he showed promise in his grappling abilities, Hubbard’s opposition was tough and he was clearly winning the fight through two rounds.
What followed was an infamous 60 seconds of Rohskopf pleading to his coach to call the fight, going so far as to call for the end of the fight at least nine times, as well as repeatedly saying “I don’t have it.”
On the flip side of the coin, a lot of people criticized Light Heavyweight Anthony Smith’s coach when he did not call the fight after Smith was clearly not in a competitive place heading into the fifth round.
Where is the line? When is a fighter being smart about the future and when is someone just quitting? Is there ever any shame in calling off a fight?
What are your thoughts on the extremely divisive and taboo subject of ending a fight early?