During an Oct. 29 interview with MMA Roasted, UFC bantamweight contender Jessica “Evil” Eye opened up about her controversial split-decision victory over Sarah Kaufman.
Eye, 27, admits her fight with Kaufman was “close,” but she’s completely confident that she deserved to be awarded the win by the panel of judges on duty at UFC 166.
“It was a very close fight. Do I think that I won it? 110%, and I’m not saying that because I walked out legitimately as the true winner. But I legitimately won that,” Eye said of her fight with Kaufman. “I won the first two rounds. She caught me the only time in the two and a half minutes into the third round and that was the only point that I felt in danger. Other than that, yeah it was a very close fight, two high-level girls. But no I do not think she beat me. If we broke down the fight between strikes, let’s talk about clinching. Who controlled most of the clinches? Who controlled the cage? Who had more strikes while the other one was on the cage? Who showed athleticism throughout the entire fight and stayed moving? She stuck with very basic things.
“Her basic things were good enough to give me a run for my money, but what about her kicks? She threw three kicks that entire fight. I counted with myself at least 12, on top of at least 10 foot stomps I threw that are just like jabs. That’s all about being active and doing things. Those all count. It was a very close fight, that’s why it was a split decision. When something is a split decision, that means someone did just enough to be better, so why take that away from me?
“It’s so unprofessional as a woman and as an athlete to sit there. Why not take it and say ‘I lost for whatever reason, I let the judges decide my fate.’ Why does it have to be about what people think and this, that and the other?” Eye asked. “Why do people gotta make it like that? Why does she even got to make it like that?
“I respect Sarah as a fighter, but I’m losing respect for her as a woman. Because if she did, I mean she would let it go. When Aisling Daly submitted me in the second round after I was beating the crap out of her, I didn’t go around saying ‘oh well you know let’s talk about the first half.’ It doesn’t matter, it doesn’t matter. Nothing else matters because I won.”
Eye was extremely emotional about Kaufman’s comments because all she wanted was to enjoy her victory without any controversy. It was a long, difficult road for Eye to make it into the UFC ranks, so Kaufman’s post-fight comments marred what was an otherwise sweet win.
Kaufman essentially said that most people think she won the fight against Eye, and that she is hoping the official decision gets turned to a No Contest. She’s also hoping for a rematch.
“You know, I feel like something needs to be done. I feel like I won the second and the third, for sure,” Kaufman said. “For the judge to give me the second round and not the third…something is wrong with the judging in that sense. It mars the fight for both Jessica and myself. Honestly, Jessica came out and fought hard. It was a great fight. To have it marred by something like that…you want to win knowing the decision was just. I feel bad for her in that sense, in that she has the win, yet the majority of people don’t think she won. It’s kind of a misrepresentation for myself and for her.
“If there was a way to turn it into a no contest and then have us fight again, just to be clear, I would be okay with that, even though I think that I won the fight. The thing is, you can’t be too sour grapes about it. It’s a fight, and you don’t want to be pouting and stamping your feet, but you do want what’s right and what’s just.”