UFC Welterweight Gilbert Burns Supports Coach Amidst Controversy

Published 06/22/2020, 12:13 AM EDT

UFC Welterweight Gilbert Burns has chimed in on the controversy surrounding a debutant fighter choosing to call it quits mid-fight. The incident occurred at UFC on ESPN 11 and saw the first appearance of Max Rohskopf under the bright lights. The 6-0 fighter had taken the fight on 6 days’ notice was set to square off against lightweight Austin Hubbard.

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Rohskopf began the first round mounting offensive wrestling towards Hubbard and saw some success on his feet. The next round was in favor of Hubbard. Not to mention the 25-year-old Rohskopf was very much in the fight.

However, the third round never came, as Max Rohskopf elected to stay on the stool and call it a night. A fighter choosing to not continue in active competition on his own accord is a rare sight in MMA, to say the least. Adding to the discussion was the fact that his coach Robert Drysdale vehemently urged his fighter to return to action.

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Drysdale drew heavy fire for this move from fans and critics alike. The general consensus was that once a fighter has rationalized quitting, it’s the job of the coach to back the fighter in his decision.

Robert Drysdale released a statement following the backlash where he stood by his decision. Additionally, he detailed his thought process as this rarely seen event unfolded.

“If he had been seriously injured, I would have been the first one to stop that fight. I would’ve stopped that fight before anyone else. No one cares about him more than I do other than his immediate family.”

Gilbert Burns on Coach Robert Drysdale

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‘Durhino’ has come out in support of Drysdale and expressed support for his decision. Many fighters have a divided view on this issue and the subsequent approach that was to be taken.

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Several fighters including Gilbert Burns believe that this issue faced by the newcomer was more of a mental block than physical turmoil. The conversation surrounding corner ethics will be a fiercely contested issue for as long as combat sports are around.

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Darryl Pinto

2138 articles

Darryl Pinto is a senior MMA writer at EssentiallySports. He is currently pursuing his graduate degree in Mass Media (with a specialization in Journalism) out of Xavier’s College and has a year's experience in his current role. Darryl specializes in predictions, reporting, and covering UFC events live.

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