UFC fight ruled ‘no decision’ following major referee blunder

Watch the highlights video of Daniel Argueta vs. Ronnie Lawrence from tonight's UFC fight night card.

By: Eddie Mercado | 3 months ago
UFC fight ruled ‘no decision’ following major referee blunder
UFC fight night matchup Daniel Argueta vs. Ronnie Lawrence ended as a no decision | IMAGO/ZUMA Wire

UFC fight night: Vettori vs. Cannonier is underway from the APEX facility in Las Vegas, Nevada and we just saw a rare referee blunder get overturned in real time in the Daniel Argueta vs. Ronnie Lawrence matchup. It’s unfortunate, too, because this one was off to a sensational start.

After some brilliant scrambles, Argueta had caught Lawrence in a pretty tight guillotine. The referee moved in to get a closer look, and then grabbed the arm of Lawrence to see if he was still there. When Lawrence pulled his arm away from the official, he accidentally bumped Argueta in the process. That’s when the referee determined it was an official tap and elected to stop the fight.

The review camera light blinked on, and the cage-side officials gathered around to review and debate what had happened. When the dust finally settled, it was determined that Lawrence in fact did not tap, and the referee made a costly error.

It should be said that it’s always better to error on the side of safety, but this unfortunate incident really outlines the glaring problem with the UFC/MMA show/win pay structure. Unless Uncle Dana White steps in and does them a solid, both fighters are losing out on a fair shot at competing for the other half of their purses. Apparently, Lawrence was so enraged at what happened, that he blasted his opponent with some post-fight pleasantries:

Our UFC fight night description of a great battle being ruined by a referee

The fight started and Argueta attacked with a takedown right away. He was glued to Lawrence, giving no space to get any separation. Argueta took the back, and Ronnie fought impressively hard to avoid the hooks. Daniel switched things up and jumped on a guillotine. Lawrence again defended well, but Argueta was making the proper adjustments to maintain the hold.

Eventually Argueta locked it up tight enough to stop the movement of Lawrence, which prompted the referee to take a closer look. Lawrence was is a terrible spot, but he seemed calm. The referee moved in and grabbed the arm of Ronnie to see if he was out, and Lawrence provided resistance to let him know he was still in there. The problem is, when he moved his arm, he accidentally touched Argueta in a similar way to a tap. The official immediately stopped the match, and Lawrence instantly protested.

Video of the UFC fight night incident

Full UFC Fight Night: Vettori vs. Cannonier fight card results

Main card

  • Jared Cannonier def. Marvin Vettori by unanimous decision (49-45 x2, 48-46): Middleweight
  • Arman Tsarukyan def. Joaquim Silva by TKO at 3:25 of round 3: Lightweight
  • Armen Petrosyan def. Christian Leroy Duncan by unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28 x2): Middleweight
  • Pat Sabatini def. Lucas Almeida by submission (Arm Triangle) at 1:48 of round 2: Featherweight
  • Manuel Torres def. Nikolas Motta by KO at 1:50 of round 1: Lightweight
  • Nicolas Dalby def. Muslim Salikhov by unanimous decision (30-27 x2, 29-28): Welterweight


  • Alessandro Costa def. Jimmy Flick by TKO at 1:03 of round 2: Flyweight
  • Kyung Ho Kang def. Cristian Quiñonez by submission (RNC) at 2:25 of round 1: Bantamweight
  • Carlos Hernandez def. Denys Bondar by technical decision (30-27 x2, 29-28) at 4:59 of round 3: Flyweight
  • Tereza Bledá def. Gabriella Fernandes by unanimous decision (30-27 x3): Flyweight
  • Daniel Argueta vs. Ronnie Lawrence has been ruled a no decision (referee error) at 2:20 of round 1: Bantamweight
  • Modestas Bukauskas def. Zac Pauga by unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28 x2): Light Heavyweight

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About the author
Eddie Mercado
Eddie Mercado

Eddie Mercado is a writer and content creator for Bloody Elbow, and has covered combat sports since 2015. Eddie covers everything from betting odds and live events, to fighter interviews and co-hosting the 6th Round post-fight show and the 6th Round Retro. He retired at 1-0 in professional MMA, competed in one Muay Thai match in Thailand, and is currently a purple belt in Jiu-Jitsu under the great Diego Bispo.

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