Not only was Jon Jones forced to battle through the impressive striking and takedown defense of Alexander Gustafsson at UFC 165, but the light-heavyweight champ had to deal with a nasty cut over his right eye. Gustafsson cut the star early on in the bout, and although Jones punished the challenger later on with his own striking assault, the condition of his eye continued to worsen.
After the jaw dropping fight, Dana White said that referee “Big” John McCarthy and Jones had to beg officials not to stop the bout after round four. McCarthy recently appeared on “The MMA Hour“, and while he dismissed the notion he pleaded to have the fight continue, the ref acknowledged things weren’t looking good.
“That cut happened in the very first round, but it continued to evolve throughout the fight. By the time it got between the fourth and fifth round, the cut was actually — there was an upper level one that was on his eyebrow, and it creased off, like a point had been crossed into his eyelid. There was a flap of skin. So the doctor absolutely had a reason to be concerned with the cut that Jon had.”
“I said, ‘Jason, this is the last round. I think you need to let him go. I will look at it. If it gets worse, I promise you I will bring him to you.’ He said okay. That’s both of us working as a team together. He let the fight go on, the cut didn’t get any worse, and the fight came to its natural conclusion the way it should’ve.”
McCarthy also credited cutman “Stitch” Duran for the role he played in making sure Jones could continue, who apparently assured officials he had the serious gash covered. Thankfully, Jones’ condition didn’t worsen and the instant classic went on.
Now the waiting game continues, in terms of whether the UFC looks at Jones-Gustafsson II or Jones-Teixeira.
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