- Brett Okamoto, ESPN Staff Writer
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UFC president Dana White called Sanchez's controversial split decision over Pearson last weekend "insanity" and said the promotion will move forward as if Pearson won the fight.
The lightweight bout, which took place in Sanchez's hometown of Albuquerque, New Mexico, on Saturday, was widely denounced as one of the worst decisions in UFC history.
Judges Jeff Collins and Chris Tellez each scored the bout for Sanchez, 30-27 and 29-28, respectively. Judge Marcos Rosales had it 30-27 in Pearson's favor, along with an overwhelming majority of media.
White was not in attendance, but viewed the fight from his vacation home in Bangor, Maine.
"It was horrible," White told ESPN.com. "In the second round, Diego got dropped and one judge still gave him that round. Insanity, man. Pearson got robbed. Pearson won that fight clearly. He easily won that fight. We have to treat Pearson like he won and give him that next level fight.
"The thing about our sport is there's never any of that hometown advantage bulls---. Yeah, more people are going to be cheering for you than the other guy, but it's not like the judges are all from that town. Usually, athletic commissions pull the best from around the country. Whoever gave that fight all three rounds to Sanchez should never judge a fight again."
Pearson's camp filed an appeal of the decision immediately after the bout, according to New Mexico Athletic Commission representative Richard Espinoza. The appeal came in too late to be added to a regularly scheduled NMAC meeting Tuesday.
Espinoza declined to comment on the commission's stance toward the decision.