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The biggest story out of this weekend’s UFC 180 event in Mexico City doesn’t come out of the top card. Instead, everyone is getting an earful about Leslie Smith’s exploding cauliflower ear in her matchup against fellow bantamweight Jessica Eye. In the early part of the second round, Eye saw Smith’s ear swell up and marked her target, delivering a series of brutal punches until the octagon looked like a scene out of Kill Bill.
“When I connected and saw her ear blow up, that became my main target,” Eye said after the fight. “I was going to keep hitting it until they stopped the fight or it fell off.”
Officials called off the fight, ruling a TKO for Eye and sending medical professionals into the ring to take care of Smith’s wound.
Smith was understandably upset, but not on account of the huge gashing wound left in the side of her face.
“I could still see. I still had my hands. I wanted to fight. I’m disappointed,” she said. “It wasn’t the way I wanted that fight to end. I wish my ear hadn’t done that. Man, that ear was a bummer.”
The way Eye tells it, she’s out for blood.
“My goal is to be the first girl in the UFC to get a knockout win. I know I’ll do it,” she said. “Now I’ve climbed another rung on the ladder, and I’ll look around and see what my options are, but I’m almost to the top.”
If you can stomach the scene, you can check out video footage of the bloody bout here. Of course, it’s graphic and most likely NSFW, so you’ve been warned.