Veteran Canadian strawweight Randa (Quiet Storm) Markos, disqualified after an illegal kick on a UFC Fight Night card, says Brazilian opponent Luana Pinheiro made the most of the situation Saturday night in Las Vegas.
"Yes my foot grazed her but my opponent's inability to continue seemed a bit oversold and suspect," the 35-year-old from Windsor, Ont., wrote in a social media post.
Markos added the hashtag "easywayout" for emphasis.
The bout was called four minutes 16 seconds into the first round after Markos, on her back, caught Pinheiro, who was on her knees, with an up-kick to the face.
Referee Mark Smith immediately halted the fight with the stunned Brazilian on her back.
A distraught Markos immediately held out her hand as an apology. Because the Brazilian was on her knees at the time, she was considered a downed opponent and as such the kick was illegal.
Markos had taken an accidental eye poke earlier in the round, prompting a visit by the ringside physician. The fight continued with Markos' blessing.
Pinheiro, who was carried out of the cage by a coach, was taken to hospital for precautionary reasons. The UFC said Monday that Pinheiro had been released and was back home. A head CT was negative although she has a fractured hand.
Markos, meanwhile, said she needed repair work from the eye poke.
"I’ve been in the fight game for a while now. I’ve never intentionally thrown an illegal blow. It’s a fight. (Stuff) is bound to happen. I took three eye pokes (requiring stitches and loss of vision) and never thought for a second that I wasn’t going to continue."
"I let her know after the eye poke that I wasn’t leaving that cage without a win and she stole that from me," she added.
The fight was the featured undercard bout prior to the main card at the UFC's Apex production facility. The main event saw Czech Jiri (Denisa) Prochazka, ranked fifth among light-heavyweight contenders, stop No. 3 Dominick (The Devastator) Reyes, with a nasty spinning back elbow.
The Markos-Pinheiro matchup was originally set for UFC 260 on March 27 but was rescheduled after Markos contracted COVID-19.
It marked the 17th UFC appearance for Markos (10-11-1). She has lost four straight and five of the last six, dropping her record in the UFC to 6-10-1.
Markos graduated to the UFC from Season 20 of "The Ultimate Fighter" after losing to future champion Rose (Thug) Namajunas in the semifinals of the UFC's long-running reality TV show.
The 28-year-old Pinheiro, favoured Saturday by the bookmakers, won her UFC contract in November with a first-round KO win on Dana White's Contender Series. Pinheiro (9-1-0) has now won seven straight but may not remember this win.
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This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 3, 2021.