Gabriel Gonzaga's Camp Files Complaint over Elbows from Travis Browne
They were brutal, they were effective, they were thrown with a remarkable amount of force from a very short range and they earned Travis Browne an extra $50,000 in walking-around money, but were they legal?
That’s the question that many, including Gabriel Gonzaga’s camp, are wondering in the aftermath of Browne’s brutal elbows-to-the-head knockout from Saturday’s TUF 17 Finale fight card.
The fight was brief. Browne opened with an attempted high kick, which Gonzaga avoided and then shot for a single leg and the two scrambled to the fence. Gonzaga, with Browne’s back against the cage, then worked for a single-leg takedown. The ill-advised attempt put Gonzaga’s head on the hip of Browne, giving Browne a perfect shot at the side of Gonzaga’s head with his elbow.
Browne saw that opening, took it and turned the lights out for Gonzaga, ending his night at the 1:11 mark of Round 1.
Watching the video, you can see the initial elbows that put Gonzaga out and effectively ended the fight were legal, but as Gonzaga’s consciousness fades and he begins to slide down the legs of Browne on his way to the mat, at least one of Browne’s elbows hits the back of the head of Gonzaga, making those strikes illegal.
That fact was noted by Gonzaga’s manager, Marco Alvan, who posted the following on his Facebook page: “I contacted Keith Kizer head of Nevada Athletic Comission and he told me to file a complaint and he would review it. I true believe it was illegal. I never complaint about a losses who knows me know that I handle it good but illegal we can not accept.”
Browne was asked about those elbows at the post-fight press conference, “I remember hitting him with one and the referee was right there and he didn’t say anything so I hit him with two more.”
It will be interesting to see how this one plays out. At least one elbow hit the back of the head of Gonzaga, but he was already out when that elbow made its impact.
Does that fact make the blow any less illegal? Should every fighter be held accountable for every strike they throw? Is the referee to blame for a potentially late stoppage?
There are a lot of questions that will need to be answered if Gonzaga’s camp does file a complaint.
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