Ah, the beauty of being an unknown referee. Too bad Keith Peterson decided to make a name for himself on Saturday.
You see, Peterson had the pleasure of officiating the UFC Vegas 75 prelim bout between Daniel Argueta and Ronnie Lawrence. And let me tell you, it was a rollercoaster ride from start to finish. Early on in the fight, Argueta went for a guillotine choke, eager to end things quickly. But Lawrence put up a good defense, preventing Argueta from securing the submission hold. However, as fate would have it, Peterson couldn’t resist getting up close and personal with some front-row action.
As Argueta transitioned into a mounted guillotine position, Peterson saw his chance to shine — or should I say stumble? In his attempt to check if Lawrence had gone unconscious (spoiler alert: he hadn’t), Lawrence jerked his hand away like he was trying out for an audition as Houdini’s understudy.
And what do you think happened next? Well…Peterson made one of those split-second decisions that will go down in infamy. He stopped the fight! Oh boy! You can imagine how thrilled Lawrence must have been about this turn of events… not.
But fear not my friends because justice prevailed…sort of. After reviewing the footage with replay official access granted (thank goodness for technology), Peterson finally came to terms with reality and realized that he had committed an unforgivable error.
Now here comes something that even made WWE stars jealous! The fight was declared a no-contest! Yes, ladies and gentlemen, we have achieved ultimate equality on the scoreboard. Lawrence didn’t get a win, but at least he wasn’t handed an unnecessary loss either.
But let’s not forget about our hero of the hour – UFC commentator Dominick Cruz. He saw this golden opportunity to take some shots at Peterson during the broadcast. And boy did he let loose! Of course, he wasn’t alone in his criticism.
Let’s delve into the wonderful world of Twitter for some juicy comments from fellow fighters:
That’s actually absurd, the official makes a terrible mistake and calls a fight when it’s clear the kid didn’t tap. I agree with @DominickCruz there needs to be something done.
You can’t make that type of mistake.
— Daniel Cormier (@dc_mma) June 18, 2023
And now we have my good buddy Aljamain Sterling stepping up to bat:
Damn! He didn’t tap. That’s a very tough one for Keith,
Dan, and of course Lawrence if ruled as stoppage finish.
— Aljamain Sterling (@funkmasterMMA) June 17, 2023
Looks like Jamahal Hill wanted to make sure his voice was heard too:
He definitely did not tap!!!
— Jamahal Hill (@JamahalH) June 17, 2023
And the hits keep on coming with this gem from Michael Chiesa:
Andddddd now we have a botched call from Keith Peterson. That was NOT a tap.
Interested to see how this review goes… #UFCVegas75
Michael Chiesa (@MikeMav22)
But wait! There’s more!
ltr”>Good on Keith to own up to the mistake. He’s still an elite ref,
people make mistakes. He’s no Mario Yamasaki,
that’s for sure.
‘You can’t make that type of mistake’: Pros react to Keith Peterson’s fight-altering blunder at UFC Vegas 75