UFC referee Marc Goddard had quite a crazy weekend in Dublin. Facing Conor McGregor in an unexpected clash at Bellator 187, the MMA ref has finally released a full statement on the incident…
During a crazy moment at Bellator 187, the UFC’s biggest star wreaked havoc in the cage. Taking place in Dublin, Ireland, the card pitted two local favorites against each other. Irishmen Charlie Ward and John Redmond competed in a middleweight bout.
The fight was a good one, Redmond getting the better of the opening minutes, but succumbing to a late finish. With exactly one second left in the opening round, the SBG teammate of Conor McGregor landed a beautiful left hand.
It was a straightforward fight up until that moment when McGregor himself stormed the cage before referee Marc Goddard could even call the fight. Incensed and rate, McGregor screamed in Goddard’s face before later striking another official.
Goddard Finally Speaks Openly About The Incident
Although the UFC claims they removed McGregor from the upcoming UFC 219 card, that decision is highly refuted in terms of legitimacy. According to Goddard, during a lengthy social media post, he doesn’t want the Irishman to be punished.
Claiming he wants the sport to ‘move on’ from the incident, Goddard showed class and respect during his Facebook statement:
After a couple of days of downtime and reflection I would like to offer some clarification on the events that unfolded in the fight between Charlie Ward & John Redmond at Bellator 187.
Charlie Ward connected with a left hand that slumped John Redmond to his knees. At this exact point I could not and had not made my determination that John was either out of the contest or not in the position to intelligently defend himself.
At this point on my step in, and you will clearly see from the video replay that I only step across and do not wave the fight off. Charlie Ward, understandably so had reeled off in celebration thinking that I had indeed ended the contest and not as I had actually done, called time on what I believed to be the end of the round. Two distinctly different endings.
“People Have a Strange Habit…”
At this point Conor McGregor, who had once again been stood for the entire duration of the round in close proximity of the cage had taken my intervention, wrongly, as the end of the contest and proceeded to jump the fence to enter the fighting area to congratulate what he believed to be his team mates victory. At this point again my immediate concern was John Redmond who was still on his hands and knees and not in a position to look up and at me, please remember at this point I had still not officially called a stop to the contest.
People have a strange habit, particularly in highly charged and emotional affairs such as MMA contest’s of seeing and believing what indeed has not happened.
There has been the notion and belief of the fact that I had pushed Conor McGregor when this factually and categorically untrue – please again watch the video and you will see very clearly that I have my arms in between Charlie and Conor whilst trying to tell Charlie to return to his corner and let me make my determination, pushing fighters, or anyone unnecessarily so is simply not in my nature, or protocol of conduct to do so.
It is then again, clearly, that you will see Conor McGregor who put his hands on my chest to shove me, I then turn and walk away to go back and check on the condition of John Redmond.
“I Respected Conor”
Conor McGregor was then forcefully ejected from the cage, whilst still trying to get to me and continuing his verbal tirade and threats, including “seeing me in Birmingham” [my hometown] Conor McGregor’s threats are of no concern to me. He then circled outside of the cage and jumped back up on the cage and when a commission official tried to get him down he struck out to him. The video presents all the evidence that is needed.
I do not wish for any further action to be taken against any party, in particular Conor McGregor, but ultimately that is entirely out of my hands. I hope that the situation can be reviewed, learned from on how we could prevent a repeat instance and then case closed, we move on for the good of the sport.
I have known, witnessed and refereed Conor on many previous occasions over the years and watched, even in support of his meteoric rise, speaking publically to commend him and offer an insight when others had turned against him. I have known Conor before he was the mega star that he is now, long before he amassed his fame and fortune – the difference being I respected him the same and treated him no different back then.