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Quote of the Day: Josh Rosenthal Was “Slow on the Trigger” During Munoz/Weidman

(A replay of the Munoz/Weidman ending in all its gory glory for those of you who missed it.) 

Right before he kinda sorta announced his pending retirement from the sport during the UFC on FOUEL TV post-fight show, Stephan Bonnar made the audacious claim that referee Josh Rosenthal should be fined and/or suspended for his late stoppage during the Mark Munoz/Chris Weidman fight. After Weidman landed some 12 or 13 unanswered shots on a helpless Munoz, I briefly thought that we were witnessing the first death in the promotion’s history, and my immediate reaction was almost that of agreement. Almost. 

Because, although it is hard to deny that Rosenthal dropped the ball Wednesday night, the stoppage was likely considered even worse because it was a revered official like Rosenthal who made it. This wasn’t Steve Mazzagati calling an eye poke a TKO or Kim Winslow letting Jan Finney return from the dead only to be killed once more. This was Josh freakin’ Rosenthal, a man who had not only made our top five referees list a couple years ago, but had easily climbed up it a few spots in the time since. This was a man who had, as GritandMettle’s Darren Jensen put it, “reffed Shogun vs Hendo perfectly” — the same goes for his excellent job in the first round of Brock Lesnar and Shane Carwin’s UFC 116 heavyweight title fight. What we’re saying is, this isn’t an everyday occurrence for the guy. Hell, can anyone even remember an instance in recent memory that Rosenthal has even come close to screwing up (Faber/Mizugaki maybe)?

In retrospect, Bonnar’s assessment was a little harsh, but Rosenthal was still willing to admit that he shit the bed, so to speak, when he appeared on SiriusXM’s “Tapout Radio Show”:

I came home and I watched it, and I was kind of like you know, if I was sitting here, watching this on the couch, I probably would have been talking smack about myself. I always say accountability is a huge part of the sport, and you are accountable for your actions.

As for the stoppage in question, Rosenthal understands that it was a bit on the late side, but is just trying to make sure it never happens again:

 I feel like I was just a little slow on the trigger. I don’t want to see guys take unnecessary punishment. It’s a rough sport. Everyone knows what they sign in for, but it’s a millisecond-basis game. You’re making choices right there on the spot, and in the heat of the moment, I felt like I was seeing some stuff. In hindsight, I have to step my game up and make sure I’m on point for the next guys.

So what do you guys and gals think? Should Rosenthal be punished for failing to save Munoz when he was clearly out? Or does his one misstep pale in comparison to the blunders made by far lesser referees?

-J. Jones

Cagepotato Comments

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holeeball- July 15, 2012 at 11:07 am
I can't watch the video because the uploader screwed up. You suck uploader.
smellypiratehooker- July 14, 2012 at 4:10 pm
@ Tommy
I believe someone forgot to check your IQ at the door. Speaking minimum is 21. Your gonna have to leave now sir.
Alan K- July 14, 2012 at 8:51 am
Sure, Tommy. MMA is the reason you have brain damage. Whatever dude.
Qlay- July 14, 2012 at 7:20 am
"By the way, I actually hate boxing but you have to admit it's a safer sport"

Tommy, I realize opinions are like assholes, but if you think boxing is safer than mma then you're unlikely to understand the barrage of insults I was going to use on you. Go watch baseball.
timboslice- July 14, 2012 at 7:16 am
I suggest a CagePotato ban on this damn clown named Tommy. Get the hell out of here. Most of us here are grown ups with logical trains of thought. It's not our fault you couldn't hold your own in a fight and got your ass kicked, you pussy. Get the fuck out of here you yuppy, tie-dyed troll. You and your stank-ass dreads, stupid guitar, and your early 90's sandals. Go light up a bowl and save the world with a cardboard sign somewhere else, you friggin' puke.
cman- July 13, 2012 at 8:23 pm
I think tommy has way to much sand In his bag for this sport. He's spreading shredded rubber under a random jungle gym as we speak and fighting for bike helmet laws.
tommy5060- July 13, 2012 at 7:37 pm
i like mma too but dont put your head in the sand
tommy5060- July 13, 2012 at 7:37 pm
lat I checked mma is making people think its ok to punch people after their out. I suggest you watch the vids i posted till the end. Would that have happened 20 years ago before ufc1 ? i think not
tommy5060- July 13, 2012 at 5:47 pm
look at what mma is teaching our kids
NomadRip- July 13, 2012 at 2:52 pm
I wouldn't want that job. It ain't easy to have to figure out what's too much and what's just blocking shots poorly. It looked to me like he didn't see the elbow and didn't realize Munoz was out. With the benefit of watching it 20 times, it looks to me like Munoz was in and out of consciousness a few times. But with Munoz still moving, it's not as easy to tell where he is, as opposed to a falling tree/body lockup type of knockout blow.
tommy5060- July 13, 2012 at 2:49 pm
I also think the UFC videogameIs dangerous, there are many, many kids who play this game and it you can punch the other fighter after their unconscious. Why would the UFC allow that? What kind of message is that sending two kids? It seems like they're trying to poison their own brand. It seems pretty stupid to me.
tommy5060- July 13, 2012 at 2:46 pm
By the way look at this fight and tell me how safe MMA is- In its the fighter gets knocked out so bad he actually stopped breathing. They use something called an anvil bag to artificially respirate him.
By the way look at this fight and tell me how safe MMA is- In its the fighter gets knocked out so bad he actually stopped breathing. They use something called an anvil bag to artificially respirate him.

The MMA promoters try and keep stuff like this under wraps. The reality is alot of these guys go home with brain damage and I wouldn't be surprised if a some of these guys in smaller shows end of dying and it's such a small show that never gets into the media.

tommy5060- July 13, 2012 at 2:35 pm
This is a perfect example of the dangers of MMA. Guys like this go home with brain damage and we all think they're okay. Getting hit like that cause serious brain damage or even death. I don't know why we continue to allow this in MMA. When it is now a global sport that kids are watching on their TVs, whether we like it or not. This is a good example why boxing in many ways is actually safer than MMA. If you get knocked down boxing it's your choice whether you want to get up before the eight count. You'll don't have to and many don't. In MMA If you get knocked out the other fighter can pummel you and give you brain damage or even kill you. This happened to me in a street fight. I was knocked out MMA style and punched after I was out and I now have brain damage. Thanks to mma. If you don't understand the danger of getting punched after your unconscious talk to your doctor about it. I did. (By the way, I actually hate boxing but you have to admit it's a safer sport) . Even if a guy gets knocked down and gets up like an idiot you only get knocked down again and the fight gets stopped. In MMA, How many punches can you take after your out? Kids are watching on TV and thinking this is okay behavior we have to change MMA for our society because it's becoming dangerous now.
timboslice- July 13, 2012 at 2:19 pm
I really don't think it was that late.....Munoz defended by holding his hand over his head and only a few were landed after this hand went limp. Rosenthal didn't do worth a fuck in the Lesnar fight. He could have called that fight easily when Carwin was landing elbows and punches with no return. Remember, he outpunched Lesnar 77 to 2. He was probably urged to let it go like the Roy Nelson/Kimbo fight. Cash cows. Fixing the refs will only kill the UFC down the road. Either too early, or late. It's all bullshit.
Fried Taco- July 13, 2012 at 2:12 pm
He should be punished by forcing him to attend a Cecil Peoples "How to Referee MMA" class, with Kim Winslow as the guest instructor.
Daoulas- July 13, 2012 at 1:15 pm
at first when i saw that fight ending i couldnt believe josh rosenthall didnt stop it sooner. the difficult part in this sport is that if he stops it too soon everyone is like WTF asshole they were still fighting. We have all seen some amazing comebacks from guys who were getting murdered and it looked like they were done but somehow lived and even WON. i could imagine a late stoppage is worse than an pre-mature stopage- you want to make sure the super tough vets are really done and not just weathering a brutal storm. MUNOZ was trying to fight back but that many un answered punches means josh fucked up. i forgive him i hope munoz does too.
tjbaron- July 13, 2012 at 1:11 pm
Rosenthal should not be punished at all. He won't let it happen again. And if you think that stoppage was late, go take a look at some older fights with Herb Dean as the ref.