from MMA Fighting
from MMA Fighting

5. Gerard Gordeau vs. Teila Tuli

Under modern rules the kick that Gordeau landed on Tuli to finish this fight would not be allowed. Under the rules the existed back then the fight shouldn’t have been stopped, only it was.

This was the first UFC fight to air on PPV, and it appears there was some confusion as to just how violent a sport this was to be. Gordeau, a Savate fighter, and Tuli, a sumo fighter, were an odd pairing for this first bout. Gordeau landed a clean kick to Tuli’s face while Tuli was technically a “grounded opponent”. The kick sent Tuli’s tooth flying, and caused the referee to jump in between the two fighters.

The controversy is that the fight shouldn’t have been stopped. Under the rules at the time a fight could not be stopped by referee’s decision; only submissions and corner stoppages. Yet the kick was so violent that the ref just automatically had to jump in there.

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Ian is a MMA writer based out of Toronto, ON Canada. An avid mixed martial arts enthusiast and passionate fan since he was born, Ian has been writing about mixed martial arts for over 5 years.