Dana White Defends Cat Zingano-Miesha Tate Stoppage

Nate LawsonCorrespondent IApril 16, 2013

ATLANTA, GA - FEBRUARY 16: UFC President Dana White speaks during a press conference promoting UFC 145: Jones v Evans at Philips Arena on February 16, 2012 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)
Scott Cunningham/Getty Images

Miesha Tate may have an issue with referee Kim Winslow's decision to rescue her from further damage against Cat Zingano at The Ultimate Fighter 17 Finale last weekend, but UFC president Dana White believes the stoppage was justified. 

Following two competitive rounds of the main card contest, Tate was on the receiving end of several knees and elbows in the final frame of her bout against Zingano. Winslow, who has been criticized for her officiating heavily by White in the past, stepped in just as Tate appeared to be shooting in for a desperation takedown.

At the post-fight press conference, the former Strikeforce champion contested that she never stopped fighting, stating, "I don't for one second feel like it should have been stopped." 

White told MMAjunkie.com that he disagrees with his fighter's stance.

"[Tate] was in a bad position; I think it was a good stoppage," White said. "People can say her hand was down and everything else, but she just ate six, seven, eight knees. It was time for the fight to be stopped."

While Tate believes Winslow's mistake came with the timing of the stoppage, many critics of the referee feel she committed an even larger error, as one of Zingano's knees appeared to have possibly made contact with Tate's head. The strike in question occurred while Tate appeared to have a hand against the mat, which would make her a downed opponent. 

White isn't buying into that angle either, even if Winslow falls well short of his list of favorite referees.

"Her hand might have been down for a second," White continued. "First of all, it's a stupid rule anyway. It's the dumbest rule in the sport, number one. Number two, the referee was right there while the fight was going on. Not that that's one of my favorite referees--there's a lot that that referee doesn't see--but I do not agree that was a bad stoppage. It was a good stoppage. Was it illegal, what happened? If she saw it or didn't see it, that fight needed to be stopped either way in my opinion."

With the victory, Zingano secured a title shot against UFC women's bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey, as well as a head coaching spot on The Ultimate Fighter 18. 

Meanwhile, Tate falls short of regaining a shot at redemption against the champ. She met Rousey in March of 2012 at Strikeforce: Tate vs. Rousey, losing via first round armbar to her fierce rival.