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Raquel Pennington’s loss at UFC 224 shines spotlight on the onus of cornering

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Do you agree with how Raquel's corner handled the situation?
Yes 4 44%
No 5 56%
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Braden

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Back at UFC 188, 10 minutes into giving it his best shot against the younger, stronger Kelvin Gastelum, Nate Marquardt told his longtime cornerman Trevor Wittman he was done. With no trace of inner-conflict or reluctance, Wittman turned to the referee, Dan Miragliotta, and conveyed that sentiment — “it’s over,” he said. “Stop it.” And they did. The fight was stopped. Wittman didn’t linger for a moment on what it means to be a “warrior”, and felt no need to reiterate a timely fight game dogma to “dig deeper”; he was Marquardt’s guardian and protector in the heat of the moment, and he acted as such.

Sometimes accepting “enough is enough” is its own act of courage, especially in a sport where the most taboo word imaginable is “quit.”

On Saturday night, after 20 minutes of giving it her best shot against the stronger, more versatile Amanda Nunes, Raquel Pennington told her corner she’d had enough. “I’m done,” she said, “I want to be done.” In this case, her corner didn’t let her go so gentle into that good night. “No no no no,” her coach said. “Let’s power through this. Let’s believe. Change your mindset. Change your mindset. Let’s just throw everything we got. We’ll recover later. Throw everything we got.”

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Post #1   5/14/18 2:05:40AM   

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Tecia Torres says she and Raquel Pennington agree with corner’s decision to let her fight

teciatorres - #Forever I am extremely proud of my lady. You are a warrior babe. Fought every second you possibly could. You continue to amaze me daily. You motivate me to work hard and one day too receive the same opportunity to fight for a UFC championship. We are the 1%ers. Very few will ever know what we go thru as fighters and an even smaller percentage will ever earn the chance to fight on such a big stage and for a world title. #RideOrDie #AlwaysProud PS: Both us and our coaches agree with the decision made to go into the 5th round. We know Raquel more than anyone else and know if we let her give up on herself going into the last round she would have always regretted it. She fought with heart and grit until the end.
PSS: Exactly one year ago today you asked me to marry you, I can't freaking wait to wife you! @raquel_pennington

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Post #2   5/14/18 2:07:20AM   

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It's pretty obvious to me why her corner didn't throw in the towel when she wanted out.... it's because they picked Amanda Nunes to win via unanimous decision on mmaplayground, and they wanted the full 11 points, not just 5 points!

I'm just kidding, I didn't agree with it at all.

Post #3   5/14/18 3:35:15AM   

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She had a badly broken nose & had been getting pieced of the whole fight. She ended up getting her nose smashed even worse in the 5th, which could be some serious damage she has long term issues with, especially now vs if she had not gone back out for the 5th round.

You can say hindsight is 20 20, it was a title fight, maybe she gets lucky. She said she was done though so there’s likely no lucky punch to be thrown at that point. I especially have issue with this when it’s a female because nobody wants to see a girl get busted up that bad.

Post #4   5/14/18 4:18:27AM   

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I don't think it would have been such a big deal had Anik not said something along the lines of- this is going to be a big talking point next week.

I'm on the fence on this one. If Pennington really wanted to be done then she would have made more of a protest to stopping the fight in the corner. I also understand that the corner must protect their fighter when they are taking heavy damage too, Pennington was busted up but she did not seem to get visibly hurt in the fight.

Post #5   5/14/18 6:06:36AM   

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If she really wanted out that badly all she had to do was say it to the ref. He'd have stopped the fight immediately. For all we know Rocky says that stuff in training all the time. This is the fight game. It's not for the weak of heart. I have no issues with the corner and the vast majority of the people wouldn't if it were a guy. In a time where everyone is shouting for equality I find it ridiculous when stuff like this happens.

If Rocky doesn't have a problem with her corner than neither should you. Enough said.

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Post #6   5/14/18 8:04:53PM   

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We're all entitled to our own opinion, and either opinion is not necessarily wrong. Many people would handle that situation differently, especially in the heat of the moment.

You can't really say the vast majority wouldn't have a problem if it were a guy, that itself is not a statement of equality. My opinion would not change, whether it was a guy or a girl. Marquardt at UFC 188 is a prime example, and I don't look at Nate as any less of a man or a fighter because of it.

Yeah, this sport is not for the weak of heart, but that does not mean to make or convince someone to keep competing when they say they've had enough. This is not cock fighting, these are human beings competing in a sport, not a fight to the death.

This was talked about on the mma hour today, quite a bit, and it was nice to hear multiple people point of views. It helped me realize neither is wrong.

What I can tell you is Raquel doesn't say stuff like that in training. Her and her coach were both on the show, and acknowledged she is one of the toughest people and she fights through a lot of pain, with no problem, most of the time.

If you're wondering why she was wanting out, it was because of her leg, not her nose. She's had a problem with her leg for awhile, she previously broke it and it was a little sore going into the fight. Early on, after taking a few hard kicks, she felt she broke her leg again, but still tried to keep fighting through. Once the end of the 4th came, she felt she didn't have anymore left and didn't want to keep fighting on her badly injured leg.

It kind of threw her coach off when she said her leg hurts and she wanted to stop because of that. That's why he said and did the things he did. At first, when Ariel asked him if he would have changed the way he handled it, he said no, but Ariel asked him shouldn't he have asked why? He explained he didn't ask why because she already told him, it was her leg, the camera and audio didn't catch that part though. What he did say is, after thinking about it, the only thing he would have done different is ask her "Are you sure you don't want to fight anymore", and if she said "yes, I'm sure", then he would have said, "okay" and stopped the fight. So he did say he would have handled it a little bit differently, but he doesn't regret the way he handled it. Especially when it's in the heat of the moment and the corner only gets 1 minute to think and talk to their fighter.

That is where Eddie Alvarez' opinion stood (he was on the show today). When you're in the heat of the moment and your fighter approaches you and catches you off guard telling them they're done, you barely have anytime to think about it, you just have time to react. And coaches know their fighters, especially if they're long time coaches, so he feels we shouldn't doubt them on the way they handled it because they know Raquel better than you and me. He said he had a similar experience in his fight with Gilbert Melendez. He said he went back to his corner after round one, which his nose and orbital bone were broken, and he told his coach (who at the time was Henri Hooft) that he didn't think he had anything left, and Henri talked him into going back out there and fighting, which he ended up winning the fight. He was thankful to Henri for doing that and he doesn't hold it against Raquel's corner for the way they handled it, even though it was a bit of a different situation than his.

That's where Chael Sonnen's opinion came in (he was on the show too). He pointed out, it's not like it was early in the fight and she had a legit chance in coming back and winning it. This is not baseball, but he kind of looked art it as a 3 strike rule. Strike 1, she was down one the scorecards, no way she was winning a decision. Strike 2, she was pretty beat up already. Strike 3, her gas tank was close to empty so she probably couldn't land a fight ending strike to get the big upset comeback finish in the 5th. And lastly, strike 4, she asked her corner to stop the fight. Really, she shouldn't even have asked for the fight to be stopped, if you go by that, since she already had 3 strikes before asking for the fight to be stopped. You reach that point where enough is enough, and enough was enough. There was no need to send her out in the 5th, just to watch her get finished in devastating fashion.

Now again, we're all entitled to our own opinion and we're allowed to handle that situation differently, depending on the individuals. Listening to everyone's opinion and outlook on it made me realise, there was no wrong way in handling it. You have 1 minute to make a crucial decision in the heat of the moment, with people who are very emotionally invested into something. You can't fault him for not stopping it and you couldn't fault him if he did stop it. And that doesn't change depending on the gender.

I'm just happy that Raquel, her coach and her team are all at peace with the decision and no one is holding anything against anyone.

Now I think we can say, enough said.

Post #7   5/14/18 9:18:18PM