MMA Odds and Ends for Friday: Palhares Banned From UFC

Rousimar Palhares UFC president Dana White yesterday banned welterweight fighter Rousimar Palhares from competing in the Ultimate Fighting Championship after the fighter held on for a submission too long against Mike Pierce at UFC Fight Night 29 on Wednesday night in Brazil. Despite Pierce tapping and the referee breaking the action up, Palhares continued to squeeze on Pierces’ leg and while Pierce should be okay, he could have received major damage to his knee on the play. This isn’t the first time Palhares has been fingered for holding onto a submission too long, as he’s did it numerous times throughout his MMA career and also during his time grappling in ADCC. Most notably, he was suspended 90 days in 2010 for cranking Thomasz Drwal’s leg too long at UFC 111. Here’s the official statement released by Zuffa on the Palhares ban: As announced by UFC president Dana White, the UFC organization has elected to terminate its contract with Rousimar Palhares based on repeated incidents of unsportsmanlike conduct violating the UFC Fighter Code of Conduct and his Promotional Agreement with Zuffa, LLC.    At UFC FIGHT NIGHT: MAIA vs. SHIELDS on October 9, 2013, Palhares won his welterweight bout against Mike Pierce via heel hook submission in 31 seconds. Pierce appeared to tap several times physically and verbally and the ref intervened physically before Palhares let go. Despite being the only submission win on the card, Palhares was denied the Submission of the Night bonus. Managing Director of International Development Marshall Zelaznik announced at the post-fight press conference that the local commission would be investigating the length of time that Palhares held the submission.   Banning Palhares from competing in the UFC was harsh, but it was necessary. The fact of the matter is, for as exciting of a fighter as he is and as brilliant he is with his leg locks, he’s a major liability to Zuffa in the FOX era and they just ultimately couldn’t put up with having a fighter on their roster who doesn’t seem to care about his opponents’ health and safety. Therefore, the UFC had to make a big statement, and by banning Palhares, it basically says the UFC won’t condone any of this kind of action in the future from any fighter on the roster. Personally, though, I think the UFC would have made a bigger statement had they banned Palhares from the Octagon after he tested positive for PEDs at UFC on FX 6. But they gave him one more chance at welterweight, and for a little while it looked like everything was going well, up until he held onto Pierce too long, that is. Palhares has no one but himself to blame for getting cut and hopefully he smartens up and doesn’t do this in the future. But considering he’s already been given numerous chances, it’s possible another incident like this could happen again and the UFC just couldn’t take the risk.

Written by Adam Martin.

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