Finally, Rousimar Palhares has confessed his crime and admitted he has a problem.
The former UFC welterweight came out to Ariel Helwani on The MMA Hour. The 33 year-old grappling specialist still maintains that he did not mean to hurt Mike Pierce though.
“No, I did not want to hurt him,” Palhares said. “In the heat of the fight, I did not feel him tap and afterwards, when I watched the fight, I realized that I held on too long, but I really did not mean to hurt him.”
Even though he admitted it was an accident, Palhares still didn’t say that much about how he planned on changing his habit. To the surprise of many, he still maintained that the incident wasn’t his fault.
“I think it has a lot to do with my style, I am really aggressive when I go after submissions,” he said. “There have been times where I do not hold on and people get out and then I lose the fight. I am the way I fight. I’m getting better and been working a lot on this, but, this is my style.”
Maybe if this was the first incident in which Palhares held onto a submission too long resulting in his opponent being seriously injured, people might have felt sorry for him, but it’s not the first time. Palhares has developed a reputation for repeatedly committing this same offense on multiple occasions. Almost 4 years ago at UFC 111, Palhares was penalized a 90 day suspension for committing the same offense against Tomasz Drwal. He has also been known to do this at grappling tournaments as well.
Some may find it challenging to take his apology sincerely, given that he originally blamed Mike Pierce and the referee for the incident. He only admitted his mistake after the presidents of World Series of Fighting and Bellator said they wouldn’t sign Palhares because they felt he was a danger to other fighters.