Josh Thomson wasn’t especially impressed by the work the commentary team did during the UFC 288 main event between Aljamain Sterling and Henry Cejudo.
The bantamweight title fight served as the headlining bout for last weekend’s UFC 288 in New Jersey, where Cejudo returned to action for the first time in three years when he challenged Sterling. Cejudo left the sport on a high note by defending the bantamweight title against Dominick Cruz at UFC 249, but “Funk Master” managed to earn a split decision victory over the Olympic gold medalist for the third successful defense of his belt.
UFC 288 and its main event were the dominant headlines in the MMA world last weekend, and current Bellator analyst Thomson voiced some frustrations about the card’s commentary team on a recent episode of his show Weighing In with “Big” John McCarthy.
“[Cejudo] didn’t do anything wrong, he didn’t make any mistakes,” Thomson said, “I was getting a little mad at some of the commentary. ‘Cause they kept saying like, ‘ Oh, the leg kicks are having an effect.’ He didn’t switch his stances, he wasn’t flinching, he wasn’t hobbling, he wasn’t limping. What are you talking about? Yeah, they hurt. I’m sure they hurt. But he wasn’t showing anything that said the leg was hurt…I mean if you’re gonna start saying that that’s what happened, then – I don’t wanna say, they’re not skewing the audience that’s listening at home.”
Josh Thomson Took Issue With Some Of Daniel Cormier’s Commentary
The UFC 288 commentary team consisted of Jon Anik on play-by-play with Joe Rogan and Daniel Cormier providing technical analysis, and Thomson went on to say he was particularly frustrated with the narrative he felt Cormier created during the card’s main event.
Sterling spoiled Cejudo’s return by earning a split decision victory at UFC 288. (Ed Mulholland/USA TODAY Sports)
“But that bothered me a little bit, the leg kick thing bothered me a little bit and then also too, like even DC…He was saying that Henry needs to get these rounds, he’s kind of fighting from behind. I didn’t look at it that way. I looked at it as like they both need – if I’m a commentator, I need to be saying ‘Both these guys need to show themselves that they’re winning these rounds convincingly.’”
There’s always going to be some controversy when a fight ends in a split decision, and even though he got the win Sterling might be a bit frustrated by the result. “Funk Master” has struggled to solidify his place as champion after winning the bantamweight title via disqualification in 2021, and two out of his three title defense have now been split decisions while his win at UFC 280 came against an injured T.J. Dillashaw.
Even if his return didn’t go the way he probably hoped, Cejudo still proved that he’s capable of hanging with the best bantamweights the UFC has to offer. “Triple C” seemed a bit unsure about his future immediately following the loss to Sterling, but the 36-year-old has since declared that he has no plans of heading back into retirement.
Read Also: Henry Cejudo Reacts To Conor McGregor’s Post-UFC 288 Tweets & Taunts
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