Charles Oliveira Insists He Did Enough To Beat Arman Tsarukyan At UFC 300: ‘It’s Very Complex’

Oliveira on split decision loss to Tsarukyan: "The person who came closest to winning the fight was me..."

Charles 300
(via @charlesdobronxs - Instagram)

“Never leave it in the hands of the judges”. 

The age-old quote once plastered on the walls of “The Ultimate Fighter” show still rings true for UFC stars today such as high-rate finisher Charles Oliveira, who fell just short of a stoppage victory in his last fight. Earlier this month, the former UFC Lightweight Champion challenged Arman Tsarukyan in a title eliminator at UFC 300.

The crafty submission artist Oliveira came close to finishing Tsarukyan on multiple occasions throughout the fight, but each time Tsarukyan was either able to escape the submission attempt or survive to see the end of the round. To Tsarukyan’s credit, he outlanded the Brazilian in strikes and also racked up nearly nine minutes of control time with two takedowns.

“Do Bronx” Reflects On Losing To Tsarukyan

The lightweight competitors went the distance after a back-and-forth battle with Tsarukyan getting the nod by split decision. Oliveira, who was bumped down to #2 in the UFC rankings as a result, gives his thoughts on the fight not being scored in his favor.

“In reality, when it’s meant to be, it is. It’s very crazy,” Oliveira told Full Violence. “It’s very complex because the person who came closest to winning the fight was me in the three rounds. In the first round, I had the chance to get the guillotine. In the second round, I ended up with the triangle-armbar. In the last round with the D’arce and I thought he was out. But the other side won, so there’s not much you can do.

“That’s the real thing, just go home, train again, dedicate yourself and wait for the next one.”

Oliveira Reckons He Did ‘Enough’ To Win

While Oliveira’s close-call submission attempts didn’t force a tap out of Tsarukyan, “Do Bronx” believes they should have amounted to him winning at least rounds 1 and 3 to take home the decision victory.

“I think in reality, it was enough to [get my hand raised],” Oliveira said, when asked if he thought he won the fight. “That was the real thing, to knock him out and finish him. There’s not much you can do, right? I think that if I were to play on the scoreboard, I came closest to getting the submission or the knockout, not getting the knockout but the submission. I had three opportunities in the three rounds and my opponent was a guy who tried to stifle the fight holding on. I think the second round was the best round [for Tsarukyan]. He had the best round of striking with the elbows, but when it goes to a verdict, there’s no way you can cry too much or keep thinking about it.

“I had the chance to get the finish in the first, second and third, time ran out and he survived. That’s part of it, there’s not much you can do.”

For A Second, Oliveira Had Thought Tsarukyan “Went Out”

Tsarukyan held his own against Oliveira on the ground, barely scraping by the former champion’s tight submission attempts. In the opening round, it had looked like it was about to be over as Oliveira squeezed Tsarukyan’s neck in a guillotine choke to the point where his shorts came down. But, Tsarukyan stayed strong in the position and lived to see the next two rounds, where more submission threats presented themselves before reaching the judges scorecards.

“Certainly in the first round, he had a lot of heart to be able to get out,” Oliveira said of Tsarukyan. “In the second round, he was lucky it was the end of the round because the submission was very tight and in the last round, I really thought he went out because there was a lot of pressure and he was dropping his body out of nowhere. His body went limp on the ground and I thought he went out. But man, he’s a kid with a big heart. There’s not much you can do. Now on to the next one.”

Oliveira On How Judging Works

MMA’s judging criteria is based on three facets: effective striking/grappling, followed by aggressive and lastly control. Damage and impact weigh more in this scoring system which Oliveira finds “very complicated” as different judges tend to look for different things when watching fights. 

“In reality, it’s very complicated because there are places you go where they really believe in ground control. Then, there’s another place you go to where they talk a lot about connecting blows. Then, another place you go, it’s the guy who comes closest to finishing the fight. So like, man, I don’t know. I think it’s very complicated. I think it’s a lot. That’s why I think, if you want to win, go there, knock him out or finish him because then there’s no way they can take your victory away.”

Moving on from the official judges, 21 media members scored the fight in favor of Arman Tsarukyan where only 8 scored the fight for Charles Oliveira on The verdict was more split on the fan scoring as 53.4% had Tsarukyan and 43.7% for Oliveira.

Published on April 30, 2024 at 5:43 pm
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