Urijah Faber Sides With Dominick Cruz on UFC 249 Stoppage
Dominick Cruz and Urijah Faber had their issues over the years, but "The California Kid" believes his former rival has a right to protest his stoppage loss to Henry Cejudo.
For a longtime, Dominick Cruz and Urijah Faber had one of the biggest rivalries going in all of MMA. But, following Cruz’s stoppage loss to Henry Cejudo at UFC 249, and his vehement protest, Faber’s sided with his former rival.
Faber says Cruz “still had a chance”
Cruz was tapped on short notice to face the bantamweight champ Cejudo on May 9th. Early on, Cejudo came out firing massive leg kicks that had Cruz on the defensive.
In round two, it looked like Cruz was starting to get some better reads. But, late in the frame, Cejudo cracked Cruz with a massive knee that sent him to the deck.
Cejudo swarmed in with punches from above, and while Cruz ate numerous shots, the fight was stopped as he was working his way back up. As a result, Cruz emphatically protested the stoppage, and he’s continued to do so since.
So what was Faber’s take? While talking to the media recently in Florida, “The California Kid” said this (quotes via Bloody Elbow).
“The referees are in there to do their job and save guys from taking too much damage,” Faber said. “But at the end of the day, especially in world championship fights when you’re dealing with guys that are future Hall-of-Famers and multiple time world champions, we want to remove all doubt.
We want to know, like, ‘I had no more chance.’
“So I feel for him on that,” Faber added. “I feel like he could’ve still had a chance, and that’s always the part that irks you. So I can understand his frustration.”
Faber isn’t the only person who’s made this argument. Cruz had taken some big blows, but, he clearly wasn’t out when the bout was stopped.
So, should referee Keith Peterson have let it go a few moments longer? Considering the magnitude of the fight and what Cruz has achieved?
Faber doesn’t think Peterson was intoxicated
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Not only did Cruz make headlines by protesting the stoppage, after the card, he accused Peterson of smelling like booze and cigarettes. For Cruz, this has raised questions about whether Peterson was fit to officiate.
But when Faber was asked about this, the Hall of Fame fighter said this.
“I doubt that Keith Peterson was drunk,” Faber said. “He might’ve been sweating some alcohol and definitely smelling some cigarettes, but I don’t think he was drunk.
He was trying to look after Dom.”
Faber and Cruz have fought three times to date. Faber quickly submitted the former champ way back in 2007, and Cruz went on to record two decision wins over the Sacramento star.