Fighter taps to save his opponent from further punishment!

Mike states he did it of respect but some still call it a cheap move.

There are some things in amateur MMA which a pro fighter can’t afford – Mike Pantangco, a Philippine native who studies and trains MMA in Michigan, knows that. In April, 2014 he was scheduled to fight Jeremy Raser at the strawweight bout at PCFL: Uprising. As it turned out later, Raser was informed of an upcoming fight only four hours before the start. Not sure it was the only reason why Jeremy looked much weaker than Mike but a fact’s a fact – he was taking brutal punishment since the very start. Mike kept landing nasty kicks and punches avoiding any Raser’s attempts to bring it to the ground. At the dying seconds of the opening round Raser suffered a spinning back fist followed by the right head punch and looked clearly rocked and half conscious. Pantangco had more than ten seconds left to finish the fight before the break but instead of that he squatted and tapped the mat.

“I looked at him (Jeremy Raser – and he was like twitching and I said ‘this last combination I gonna pool is gonna knock him out’ and I felt really terrible. It’s not really a mercy rule, it’s a respect”, Mike explained his move later to “Inside MMA” TV show.

Mike’s decision was a shocking surprise for Jeremy who said that he was confused first but this feeling was quickly replaced with anger: “I felt I got a lot more in me. Yeah, I got beat up, I got punched a lot, kicked a lot, I got a bloody nose. Well, that’s just a bloody nose – I wish it would have continued”. But as the fighters had a brief postfight talk, Raser cooled down a bit. “You gotta know Mike, if you get to talk to the kid – there’s nothing wrong with what he did. I don’t take it too hard, so nobody out there should take it too hard. If you meet the kid, he really is a good guy, he did it out of respect and purely out of respect”, he said later to ACSLive.

Pantangco really is a generous guy but, as his interviews show, he realizes the fact that such a move is possible only if you are an amateur and not paid for the fight. In the mentioned interview to “Inside MMA” he confessed that if he should go pro, he would not do that to a stunned opponent.