July 11, 2012; San Jose, CA, USA; Mark Munoz (bottom) fights Chris Weidman (top) during the middleweight bout of the UFC on Fuel TV at HP Pavilion. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-US PRESSWIRE
MMA may very well be the hardest sport in the world to be a referee for. No matter what you do, it seems that you're always doing something wrong in someone's eyes.
Whether it's stopping a fight too early, not seeing a foul, not standing up a fight after too long of a stall on the ground, standing the fight up too early...it's really a thankless job.
But a referee's most important job, above all else, is to use his or her access to "the best seat in the house" to protect the two combatants in the cage.
That did not happen on Wednesday night during the main event on Fuel TV when referee Josh Rosenthal allowed Mark Munoz to take countless, unprotected, violent shots directly to the head after being very clearly knocked out prior to the stoppage.
To his credit, Josh Rosenthal is typically considered by most to be one of, if not the best referee in the business. However, his apparent disregard for Munoz's well-being needs to be examined more closely.
At this point, unless there is some great explanation as to why he decided not to stop the fight, many fans are going to be calling for a suspension to Rosenthal's referee license...and rightfully so.
What happened was completely unacceptable and may put some tarnish on an otherwise very fun night of fights.