Mikey Musumeci commented on his decision victory over Gantumur Bayanduuren at ONE Fight Night 6.
On Friday, January 13, top BJJ competitor Mikey Musumeci successfully defended his ONE flyweight submission grappling world title in the co-main event of ONE Fight Night 6. Watch video highlights of that match here.
And even though the New Jersey native walked away with a dominant decision over Combat Sambo World Champion Gantumur Bayanduuren, he wasn’t ultimately pleased with how the match played out. For nearly eight full minutes of the 10-minute submission-only affair, Musumeci cranked on a fully-locked inside heel hook, contorting the Mongolian’s leg well beyond its breaking point.
After the victory, Musumeci spoke to the assembled media, expressing his disgust over the injury to Bayanduuren’s leg.
“I’m kind of nauseous right now. I’m really sick to my stomach. I never felt someone’s leg explode like that in a match. I’ve been training for 22 years I never broke someone’s leg that much. I’ve broken a lot of legs but when that leg exploded, I didn’t know what to do and it’s just disgusting and gross. I really wish he tapped. The result didn’t change and now he’s in the hospital. So I don’t know. But what a warrior he is for showing his will.”
Indeed, Bayanduuren never once appeared in a position to pull out the victory, so his refusal to tap seemed ill-advised. Musumeci was on the heel hook approximately two minutes into the contest and stayed on it until less than two minutes were remaining.
According to Musumeci, he continued to attack the heel hook because he could still feel Bayanduuren’s leg popping.
“Sometimes I have this problem when I fight, I get too stubborn on a submission or I focus on something and then they channel, they change to do something else. So the problem was I kept popping his leg, so I felt like how do I stop doing this move and it keeps popping? So eventually, I was like, screw it. I looked at my corner, they’re like ‘two minutes left,’ and I’m like screw it. I let go and then I took his back. I should have probably done that earlier. But how do I go again, if I keep doing damage to a certain leg? I definitely have never been in that exact scenario. So it was new for me, for sure.”
While he respects his opponent’s toughness, Musumeci couldn’t understand why, under the circumstances, he allowed himself to be injured instead of tapping out.
“Yeah, I just think it was just no point, he lost anyway. For example, you’re winning a match in IBJJF, where there are points and you’re in a submission. You [don’t] tap it out, you might pop your foot or something, but you win the match. But if you’re completely losing a match, and you’re in full-lock submission, just not tapping, you’re just going to injure yourself. And when I compete, I don’t want to hurt anyone. I want them to train tomorrow. You know, I don’t want to hurt my opponent at all. So I really didn’t like being put in that position where I had to break his leg. I’m like nauseous right now from doing it. I’m a really gentle training partner. I don’t hurt anyone I roll with. So it definitely pulled out a part of me that like I didn’t like. It’s just stupid. I just thought it was a waste of him doing that to his leg…
“What a tough opponent. What a warrior he is for breaking his leg for no reason.”
Confirming the obvious, the South China Morning Post’s Nicolas Atkin reported that Bayanduuren suffered serious damage to his leg, including a torn ACL, MCL, meniscus, and a broken ankle, with an estimated recovery time of one year.
Gantumur Bayanduuren suffered a torn ACL, MCL, and meniscus, and a broken ankle, in that leg lock by Mikey Musumeci.— Nicolas Atkin (@NicoSCMP) January 17, 2023
No official recovery timetable, but it’s estimated to be around 12 months.
Mikey said he felt everything "rip like cardboard".#ONEChampionship pic.twitter.com/fV6YJz5yTY