Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder fought to a dramatic 12th-round draw on Saturday night in Staples Center during their highly-anticipated showdown for the WBC heavyweight crown.
While Fury controlled most of the fight, Wilder registered a knockdown in the ninth before appearing to put the challenger to sleep midway through the final round. Instead, Fury set the sports world ablaze with his Undertaker-like return to consciousness, continuing the bout and standing on his feet long enough to earn the draw.
After the bout, folks took to social media to criticize the referee’s handling of the knockdown, opting to believe Fury had more than a 10-count and shouldn’t have been allowed to continue the bout.
Veteran MMA referee John McCarthy jumped into the conversation on Twitter on Monday to set the record straight:
“You need to understand the mechanics for a knockdown which is as soon as the referee calls the fighter down the time keeper starts a count,” McCarthy wrote in his thread. “The referee moves the standing fighter away towards a neutral corner and then picks up the count from the timekeeper at we will say somewhere around 3 or 4. The referee then continues his count up to 10 if the fighter is still down. It is a ’10’ count not 10 seconds of time. The referee was perfect in this situation. Hope this helps. It was a great fight, wasn’t it?”
Wilder desperately needed the knockdown in the 12th just to earn the draw. As riled up as some are in the aftermath of the fight, it’s not inconceivable to think Wilder should have lost on points. As of now, no rematch date has been announced, but Wilder is already talking up the rematch “to end the controversial talk around the world once and for all,” per BBC.