Whatever issues Rousimar Palhares has, his manager Alex Davis is universally respected as a deeply principled figure in the sport. In an interview with MMAJunkie, Davis acknowledged the heel hook was held too long Wednesday night in Brazil vs. Mike Pierce, but avered that there was no ill will.
"We have talked about it at length," Davis today told MMAJunkie.com. "The one thing I can certify is that Rousimar does not hold on to a sub out of malice. It's unconscious, a mix of adrenaline and years of being conditioned to not let go."
"I can attest to the fact that Rousimar is a very simple, humble and well-meaning person. This is not malice but instinct, nature of the beast.
"That said, we need to keep on working on it. Rousimar used to hurt people in training, but he has become very controlled now. Now we need to work on the fights, work on keeping him conscious rather than just automatic."
"It might be hard for people to understand that don't know Rousimar personally, but I'm telling you, he holds on out of instinct. He only realizes it afterward."
"These guys are in the zone. To me, it's pure instinct.'
"He's perplexed. He doesn't really grasp it. He doesn't really understand that he's doing something overly wrong. He doesn't get it."
"It's very sad for me. I understand the UFC's perspective. They have to do what's in their best interest. I get Dana White's perspective. I think it was a bit radical, but he has done this before."
"First of all, we're going to figure out what the problem is. This kid is not a mean kid. Everyone who is with him loves him to pieces.
"We're going to try to figure out why this happens. Why does this kid do this s---? Why doesn't he just stop?"