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New UFC Middleweight Champion Du Plessis Denies Sean Strickland’s “Head Butt” Blames

The UFC 297 main event in Toronto was a spectacle to behold, with Dricus du Plessis claiming the middleweight championship in a nail-biting split decision victory over Sean Strickland. The fight, a close five-round battle, saw du Plessis emerge as the new champion, a title many fighters dream of but few achieve.

Strickland / IG / Following his championship loss to du Plessis, Strickland to social media to blame a “head butt” foul.

In the aftermath of his championship loss, Sean Strickland turned to social media to express his grievances, blaming a “head butt” for his defeat. This claim stirred up discussions among fans and experts alike, as Strickland, known for his resilience and strength, rarely resorts to excuses.

The now-former champion was visibly battered during the fight, attributing his bloody state to the alleged head butt.

Contrasting Strickland’s accusation, the new champion, Dricus du Plessis, expressed unawareness of any such foul, whether accidental or intentional. Addressing the media at the post-fight press conference, du Plessis stood firm, asserting that the fight was clean and fair. His stance not only reflects his confidence in his victory but also upholds the integrity of the sport.

The Fight Was A Close Contest

The UFC 297 main event was anything but one-sided. Both fighters showcased their skills and determination, with the judges’ scores of 48-47 on two cards reflecting just how evenly matched they were. For Strickland, this match marked his first loss since December 2022, halting a four-fight winning streak that included an impressive upset over Israel Adesanya at UFC 293.

On the other hand, du Plessis’ victory in his first title defense highlights his rising status in the UFC.

du Plessis / IG / Following the blame, the new UFC Middleweight champion Du Plessis argued that he is not aware of any foul in the game.

The head butt, as claimed by Strickland, has become a topic of much debate. In the high-octane environment of a UFC fight, physical clashes are inevitable, and sometimes, accidental fouls like head butts can occur. However, the lack of immediate reaction or official intervention during the fight raises questions about the validity of the claim.

Dricus Du Plessis’ Triumph: Skill or Fortune?

Du Plessis’ victory, while marred by controversy, stands as a testament to his skill and strategic prowess in the octagon. His ability to go toe-to-toe with a fighter of Strickland’s caliber and emerge victorious speaks volumes about his potential in the UFC middleweight division.

Whether the alleged head butt played a significant role in the outcome remains a subject of speculation. But du Plessis’ performance cannot be undermined.

du Plessis / IG / Despite the loss and his subsequent claims, Strickland has shown a commendable attitude, taking his championship loss in stride.

His resilience and ability to move forward, regardless of the circumstances, demonstrate the mental fortitude required of a champion. Strickland’s journey in the UFC is far from over, and his response to this setback will be keenly observed by fans and critics alike.

What is the Head Butt Foul in MMA?

In mixed martial arts, a head butt is considered an illegal move. Accidental head butts can happen during close combat, especially in grappling scenarios. However, intentional head butts are seen as unsportsmanlike and can lead to penalties or disqualification.

Thus, the controversy in this fight hinges on whether the head butt was deliberate or accidental and whether it significantly impacted the fight’s outcome. The UFC, known for its stringent rules and regulations, takes such allegations seriously, and any foul play, if proven, could have significant repercussions.

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