Michal Oleksiejczuk says arm didn’t break at UFC 302, disagrees with stoppage

Michal Oleksiejczuk isn’t sure he could’ve escaped the armbar at UFC 302 but feels like he should’ve been given more agency over the situation.

On Saturday’s main card at Prudential Center in Newark, N.J., Oleksiejczuk (19-8 MMA, 7-6 UFC) lost to Kevin Holland (26-11 MMA, 13-8 UFC) by technical submission in Round 1 after referee Herb Dean deemed his arm dangerously contorted.

Though his arm was bent awkwardly, Oleksiejczuk told MMA Junkie on Tuesday that it did not break. While he still awaits the results of an MRI to see exactly what the issue is, Oleksiejczuk said he felt the stoppage was incorrect.

“I feel good,” Oleksiejczuk said. “My mental is OK. My arm is not broken. I think that I want a fight in a few months. I will be ready. … I didn’t tap. My arm is not broken. I felt great in this fight. This stoppage is not good. It’s not correct, in my opinion. … In my opinion, the stoppage is not correct. I think that if the fight was longer, my chance in this fight is (better).”

According to the ABC Unified Rules a technical submission is defined as “when a legal submission act results in unconsciousness or broken/dislocated bone(s)/joint(s).”

The decision to stop a fight on the basis of a contorted limb is somewhat subjective to the referee’s discretion – and in the case, Oleksiejczuk thinks Dean misjudged.

“This is my career,” Oleksiejczuk said. “This is my choice. I am really a warrior. I want to fight every time. In my opinion, this is my choice: tap or not. … I don’t know but my opinion is very simple. I am a warrior and this is my work. I want to show the best fights. I want to show very exciting fights. That’s all.”

Oleksiejczuk did not indicate he plans to appeal the decision to the New Jersey State Athletic Control Board (NJSACB), though wants to wait until his medical results come back to make that decision.

UFC CEO Dana White agreed with Dean’s stoppage and said he thinks the referee should intervene to prevent debilitating injury.

In addition to the thoughts expressed publicly, Oleksiejczuk’s coach Ivan Kirillov told MMA Junkie that White approached them at the event to praise his fighter’s toughness.

“Dana White came to me and said that he didn’t want to hurt him,” Kirillov said. “It’s not about him. It’s about his health. He said Michal is very tough but they don’t want him to hurt himself because of that, because of that situation.”

Oleksiejczuk has lost back-to-back fights and three of his most recent four, making the loss sting a little more. With respect from his promoter and positive messages from fans around the world, Oleksiejczuk expects his next fight to be back under the same banner, especially considering he recently signed a new multifight deal.”

“We’ll see if my arm is OK,” Oleksiejczuk said. “I want to go forward and fight with the best fighters in this division. I want to make progress. … I just want to go forward and fight again as soon as possible once I’m recovered. … I just want to say that you for all fans because I got a lot of messages from all over the world. There were good words for me.”

For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC 302.

Story originally appeared on MMA Junkie