Big John McCarthy discusses controversial Alistair Overeem referee stoppage

Big John McCarthy, Ariel Helwani, , Robbie Lawler, Ben Askren, Greg Hardy, Alistair Overeem

Bellator color commentator and MMA referee Big John McCarthy has given his thoughts on the controversial stoppage in the Alistair Overeem vs. Jairzinho Rozenstruik fight.

Referee Big Dan Miragliotta stopped the fight at 4:56 of the fifth round after Rozenstruik knocked Overeem down. But instead of continuing to attack Overeem, Rozenstruik walked away from his opponent, which has led some to believe it was a premature stoppage.

On the “Weighing In” podcast, host Josh Thomson asked McCarthy if he believes the stoppage in the Rozenstruik vs. Overeem fight was an early one. Here’s what McCarthy said.

“I have no problem with the actual stoppage. And the reason why is what happened with the actual stoppage is that when Alistair Overeem popped up, when you saw him pop up what did he do? He stumbles over and that’s when Dan called it. The problem if you’re going to look and say is there a problem with the stoppage? Yes, there kind of was, and I don’t want to pick on Dan in this at all,” McCarthy said.

“This is one of those, it’s so hard to be Dan in that situation and for people to understand what is going through his mind right there because he comes in when Jairzinho hits Alistair and when Alistair goes down, Dan is coming in and he’s trying to pass over the spacing of those two guys. And he’s trying to see because he’s looking at Alistair, he’s not looking at Jairzinho and Jairzinho stops and Dan comes into him, and his hands touch Jairzinho, and that basically tells Jairzinho, ‘Oh that’s the referee,’ and he puts his hands up and he starts walking away. Dan had not called the fight.”

McCarthy said that when Overeem had trouble standing up straight, it gave Miragliotta the benefit of the doubt that he didn’t stop the fight early.

“I was really glad honestly that Alistair didn’t just pop up and stand there. There was that stumble because that gave Dan the ability to say, ‘I’m not going to let you go on in the fight.’ But he could have because he knew the 10-second clapper went off, so he is counting down in his head, he knows there are only five seconds left in this round when he calls the fight, so he’s calling it based on the safety of Alistair Overeem. A lot of people aren’t going to like it. I don’t have a problem with it.”

Do you think that Big Dan Miragliotta stopped the Alistair Overeem vs. Jairzinho Rozenstruik fight too early?

This article first appeared on BJPENN.com on 12/10/2019. 

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