Anderson Silva has questioned the validity of his defeat to Michael Bisping at UFC Fight Night 84.
Per Chisanga Malata of the Daily Star, the Brazilian said: "If you can't win in one way, they find a way to take it from you. Sometimes thinks are like in Brazil. Totally corrupted."
UFC President Dana White shared his belief after the bout that Silva should have been ruled the victor. According to Malata, he said:
"I have to watch it again there was so much craziness going on after the flying knee. But I believe that I had it even going into the fifth round and whoever wins the fifth round won the fight. And I thought that Anderson Silva won."
Both fighters scored heavy blows on their opponent during the contest, with Bisping sending Silva to the canvas in the second round courtesy of a powerful left hook. The Spider hit back in the following round with a brutal knee to the head, per #UFCLondon:
Here are the final scorecards for the bout which show all three judges had Bisping narrowly edging the fight 48-47, courtesy of UFC writer Gareth Davies:
The 40-year-old was disappointed with the decision:
However, he clearly bears no grudges against his opponent and both showed remarkable sportsmanship, per UFC:
Per UFC, White ran the rule over Silva's performance with the Brazilian making his first appearance after more than a year out:
Lightweight fighter John Makdessi tweeted his support of Silva and also criticised the judges:
Fox Sports' Karyn Bryant agreed with the decision, though:
I will say this: I think Anderson could have won, but he just didn't commit to trying hard enough. His skill is still there tho. #UFCLondon— Karyn Bryant (@KarynBryant) February 27, 2016
Who should have won?
Indeed, though the flying knee was the most significant blow landed in the fight by either competitor, Silva struggled to maintain sustained periods of offensive pressure on Bisping, who produced a strong and controlled showing for much of the contest.
The defeat is now Silva's third consecutive loss and takes his overall record to 33-7, while the 37-year-old Bisping has won the same number in succession to take his career to 28-7 and could be set for the first title fight of his 10-year career in UFC.
The judges' decision has clearly proven divisive among fans, pundits and professionals alike, though, so it equally wouldn't be surprising for the pair to face each other again in a rematch.