Cornermen are supposed to be the voice of reason for a fighter in the cage. They're supposed to point out the things a fighter can't see while in the middle of a round and provide helpful tips between rounds.
Yet, we've all seen instances when cornermen just aren't doing it right. Occasionally (or frequently for some fighters) a cornerman just doesn't do the smart thing.
Each fighter requires a different motivation technique and coaches should know what works and what doesn't. Unfortunately in these instances it seemed the cornermen failed to provide even a single moment of strategic importance in between rounds.
After a round in which their fighter is hurt or visibly damaged most cornermen are quick to tell their fighter that they're okay.
If your fighter looked like Antonio Silva does do you really think telling them they're okay is going to do anything? Obviously they're not okay or their face wouldn't resemble hamburger meat.
Instead of lying and telling your fighter they're okay tell them why they got hurt in the first place. That would go a lot further in helping their fighter rather than telling them they're okay.
"Yes you're bleeding a bit but you're okay. Just a flesh wound."
I know it's a common phrase in the training sessions leading up to the fight and even between rounds but let's be honest, anyone can be KO'ed on any given night in MMA.
Telling your fighter that their opponent doesn't have any power may give them a bit of confidence but it could also lead to a false sense of security. A fighter should worry about their opponent's punching power even if they don't own a single KO victory.
With four-ounce gloves, it's far too easy to get clipped because a fighter didn't respect their punching ability. Better safe than sorry. Or unconscious.
Perhaps the most frustrating part of watching coaches talk to their fighter in between rounds is when they tell them to stick to the game plan even if they're losing.
I understand sticking to the plan if you're winning but when the fight's not going a fighter's way, obviously something needs to change. The Diaz brothers are a prime example of this due to their usual single-minded strategy coming into a fight.
When a fighter is clearly down on the scorecards or their strategy isn't working, it's time to switch things up even if it means throwing leather. Fighters and coaches should always have a plan B or C.
As Dana White loves to say: "Don't leave it in the hands of the judges."
Yet, some fighters and their corners are still confident in their ability to score a fight. Recently Bryan Caraway's corner told him to "just coast" in the final round of his contest with Takeya Mizugaki. The bad corner advice due to lying and telling their fighter he was up on the scorecards cost Caraway a victory.
Coaches aren't judges and therefore shouldn't tell their fighters they're up on the scorecard. Judging scorecards are too funky to be depended on.
Athletes love to control their own destiny and "just coasting" doesn't put them in that position. Why wait for a judge to decide your fate when you can do it yourself via tapout or knockout?