Johnny Bedford was ecstatic after UFC Fight Night Abu Dhabi opponent Rani Yahya crashed to the canvas and the referee stepped in to halt the bout.
But moments later that elation turned to frustration as the bout was ruled a no contest.
The result stemmed from the fact, which was clear on the replay, that Yahya had hit the mat following an accidental clash of heads. Yahya not only went down, he went down hard, as in near-knockout hard, leading the referee to immediately stop the contest.
Bedford, initially thinking he had won, called it “total bull. I cant believe he would let it end this way,” immediately after the fight.
But given some time to reflect, he later posted an explanation for his reaction on his Facebook page:
“First of all I want to thank the UFC, Dana White, Sean Shelby, and all of the staff in the best promotion in the world. Thank you to Abu Dhabi for the once in a life time opportunity. Your country is amazing.
I hope all the fans can understand my actions and frustrations showed at the time of announcement. I had not looked at any replays, and in all honesty have still not seen a replay. The referee stopped the fight with me throwing punches, therefore I was celebrating a much needed win.
I have no disrespect for Rani Yahya and meant none at the time. My frustrations have come from me being sidelined by injuries and finally feeling the best I could for this fight. With all of my misfortunes of injuries and a set back in my last fight, I put myself into a position where I needed this win and was crushed when I found out I would not be receiving my win bonus.
I fight for my wife and 2 young kids, who rely on me for putting food on the table and paying the bills. I apologize to anyone who took offense to my reaction and hope that you all can put your self in my position and understand why I was upset. I wish the best for Rani and hope that he will accept my apology, but also a rematch.
I was unable to fight in Texas a few weeks prior in Dallas: So why not San Antonio in June?
Please understand that I am family man, that put everything on the line for this fight, and at that moment felt robbed. I now understand it was an accidental head butt, and wish it would of ended differently.
So please UFC, Mr. White, Mr. Shelby and the entire Zuffa staff allow me to fight sooner rather than later, and prove to you and the world that I am a fighter who will bring it 100% everytime.
I look forward to my next fight where I can end it without an controversy.”