Invicta FC bantamweight Jessamyn Duke is appealing her knockout loss to Miriam Nakamoto at Invicta FC 5. Duke was knocked out by an illegal knee from Nakamoto but “Big” John McCarthy deemed that he was stopping the fight after a earlier knee. Duke’s camp confirmed she would be appealing the loss via various outlets.
The knockout loss led to quite a bit of confusion as it appeared clear to those watching the fight online that the final knee was fired when Duke was clearly grounded. Further complicating matters was McCarthy’s explanation that he was stopping the bout after the first knee that sent Duke into a takedown attempt. When reviewing the footage, McCarthy moves in close but does pauses, rather than move in, and allows Nakamoto to follow through with a second knee that knocked out Duke.
Duke, who is trying out for The Ultimate Fighter 18, explained her decision to protest on MMAJunkie Radio:
“Even initially from the moment it happened, I thought, ‘I think my knees were down. Maybe they weren’t. Surely they would’ve called that,'” she said. “It wasn’t until we got back to the warmup area that we got bum rushed by people saying, ‘They showed that replay – you need to go get a commissioner. You need to appeal that – it was pretty blatant.’
“I don’t want to be a poor sport. I don’t want to be the fighter that, after taking a knee to the skull is like, ‘I was fine!’ only to find out later that wasn’t the case. I’d rather suck it up and be a good sport and shake my opponent’s hand, thank her and thank her coaches, and then later, when I can see some footage, then I can definitively say, ‘OK, that was a bad call.'”