Haraldur Dean Nelson, father of MMA fighter Gunnar Nelson, told visir.is this morning that they have submitted an official appeal to UFC, to get the result of his loss against the Argentinian Santiago Ponzinibbio reversed.
“We have sent an appeal to UFC and we want the results of the fight changed, because the one who won repeatedly broke the rules,” Haraldur said. “We want the results changed to “no contest”, or no result and to have the fight declared null and void.”
Seeing to the matter
The team behind Gunnar are launching the appeal, and Haraldur said that Gunnar’s coach John Kavanagh is in Las Vegas where he will pursue the issue.
“We want UFC to do a thorough investigation of the issue, not just of this fight but the behaviour of Ponzinibbio in other fights. But his actions were especially vicious in Glasgow,” he said.
Eyeing a dangerous trend
Haraldur said that it was not conventional to get results changed in UFC, but he claimed that they wanted to send a message that conduct like shown by Ponzinibbio will not be tolerated. He admits that it will be difficult to prove that any rules were broken, but claims that there is evidence to back up Gunnar’s claim.
“Men have to be responsible for their actions. Is it right to give a man a result based bonus for acting like this?”, Haraldur said. “If you win by cheating, then should you be awarded for it? My answer is obviously no. On the contrary, men should be punished and the win taken from them, because this wasn’t a win.”
Pictures that were released after the fight show Ponzinibbio poking Gunnar in both eyes and Haraldur claims that from that point on he had lost his depth perception and seen double.
“The first time Gunnar goes after him, Ponzinibbio thrusts his fingers in both of his eyes. Pictures show that clearly, and after that Gunnar sees double and his eyes start to hurt. Gunnar say that he has never experienced anything like it before.”
Ref with eyes wide shut
Haraldur admits that Gunnar should have complained to the referee immediately after the fight and that he now regrets not having done so. He says that Leon Roberts, who presided over the fight failed at doing his job.
“Gunnar gets a hook in the face and then Ponzinibbio grabs his pants and pulls at them. Still Roberts doesn’t say anything,” Haraldur said. “When they’re at the wall of the cage he puts his fingers into Gunnar’s eye once again. Why did he do that if he was going to punch him? This guy is supposed to be a world class boxer, but he doesn’t know how to make a fist?”
“This case is very serious, because Gunnar could have been blinded and it could have ended his career.”
This article was first published on THE REYKJAVIK GRAPEVINE