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Even Without Instant Replay, There Is Justice In California For Billy Evangelista

(The illegal knee that never was.)

Remember the Strikeforce Challengers event back in May where the main event bout between Billy Evangelista and Mike Aina ended in a controversial disqualification?  Sure you do, it was the one where Evangelista landed what appeared to be an illegal knee to the head of a downed Aina, though replays later proved it to be a totally legal knee to the shoulder.  Aina played up the injury until he was ruled unable to continue and the bout ended with Evangelista’s disqualification, thus making the case for the exact type of instant replay use that the NSAC just approved.  But even without the use of replay, the California State Athletic Commission actually did the right thing in yesterday’s appeal hearing, voting unanimously to change the outcome of the bout to a ‘no decision’ and removing the only loss from Evangelista’s record.

What’s interesting is that the commission didn’t actually view the blow in question on video, but instead relied on photo evidence and testimony from Evangelista, referee Herb Dean, and CSAC Executive Officer Bill Douglas.  Not that those guys aren’t credible, but didn’t someone at least have a laptop handy? 

Regardless, everyone seemed to agree that it was a legal blow, and though they couldn’t bring themselves to rule the bout a TKO victory for Evangelista at least they kept him from taking an unjust loss.  That the CSAC not only resisted an opportunity to fuck something up, but instead actually made things right, that’s cause enough for celebration if only because of how rare it is — kind of like seeing a bald eagle.  The pure majesty of it stops you in your tracks.

Cagepotato Comments

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Jay Smith- August 25, 2009 at 10:23 pm gotta love it. Aina faked being hurt cause he was gettin his ass kicked.
Cookie Monster- August 25, 2009 at 3:45 pm
FINALLY!!! this is the single most infuriating moment i have ever witnessed in mma. its bullshit that he didn't get the win but alright. aina should go stick a cactus in his ass. what did you think was gonna happen when everyone checked out the footage you ass? its hard to pull a fast one on people when everyone can watch instant replay from five different angles. in conclusion, suck it mike aina, you are a disgrace.
LAS- August 25, 2009 at 2:30 pm

Herb may have muffed the call, but if Aina would have known better than anyone that the strike was not illegal. My memory of the fight is fuzzy, but Aina was really hamming it up, and referees are usually not inclined to think a fighter is faking it.

If Aina hadn't been wincing, crying and holding his face, I don't think Herb would have told Quadros he suspected a broken jaw.
ScrambledEggs- August 25, 2009 at 1:58 pm
People here ripping Aina a new asshole should turn their hate in Herb Dean's direction.

I here all the time that Herb Dean is one of the top referee's in MMA, and this is just another example of his incompetence.
The man was standing right there looking in the direction of the knee strike and called it an illegal blow. He didn't appear to be shielded by anything he just blew it.

Then to make matters worse afterwards when they were giving Aina time to recover from this "illegal" blow and the doctor's looking at him as well as Dean he says to Aina I don't think you can continue your jaw doesn't look right. Really?
He even went as far as telling Quadros in his interview after the fight was stopped that Aina's jaw might be broken.
What a joke.
AkilleeZ- August 25, 2009 at 1:12 pm
They should change Aina's record to 11 wins 6 losses 1 draw and 1 no-contest-due-to-being-a-complete-pussy.
Jackal- August 25, 2009 at 12:40 pm
"Aina played up the injury until he was ruled unable to continue"

what a big vagina. This guy should go play in the world cup, those guys are good at faking injuries. "OWWW OMG MY LEG OOOOWWW OHH AAHHH!!!.." ... "oh no yellow card? shucks ok lets play!"

Jeffro- August 25, 2009 at 11:41 am
I know a government employee who hit a bald eagle with his government vehicle. He got in big trouble even though it was the eagle's fault.

BallPtPenTheif- August 25, 2009 at 11:27 am
How about about ruling Mike Aina as a cheating scared little bitch? Nothing pisses me off more than people lying to an official in order to win or get out of a fight.
ihateemo- August 25, 2009 at 10:58 am

"I bet Aina probably keeps the winner's purse and Evangelista doesn't see any more dough."

Do fighters get their win bonus if the other guy is DQ'd? Either way, Evangelista was screwed out of a few thousand dollars. If Aina profited from being "unable to continue" after taking a legal blow then it's a definite case of WTF MATE. Round these parts, you don't get a win bonus after being unable to continue - we call that a TKO.
Dmonicideals- August 25, 2009 at 10:51 am
What's this? A BJ Peen trained fighter taking the easy way out and whining about something that never happened? Shocking..........
Kim Couture is a cunt- August 25, 2009 at 10:29 am
They should fine Aina for being a fuckin pussy. Fuckin pussy.
agentsmith- August 25, 2009 at 9:43 am
It's like witnessing a unicorn giving birth, isn't it?

But don't worry, I'm sure they'll fuck up the next few piss/blood tests to make up for it.
battleminnow- August 25, 2009 at 9:41 am
I bet Aina probably keeps the winner's purse and Evangelista doesn't see any more dough.
portland mma- August 25, 2009 at 9:28 am
CSAC actually got something right, the times they are a changin.
Old_Bald_and_Irish- August 25, 2009 at 9:19 am
I saw a bald eagle once crapped on my car.