Joe Rogan was on the call for UFC 285 on Saturday as Jon Jones defeated Ciryl Gane to win the heavyweight title in his return to the Octagon in more than three years.
Before the night made its way to the big main event fight, Rogan had a helping hand in making sure Shavkat Rakhmonov was safe during his bout against Geoff Neal. In the first round, Rogan alerted referee Herb Dean to Rakhmonov’s mouthpiece which fell out during the fight with more than a minute left.
Dean pressed pause on the fight to make sure Rakhmonov found his mouthpiece and then the bout would continue. Daniel Cormier said on the broadcast it did not appear Rakhmonov “cared” about finding the piece of equipment to keep his mouth safe and kept on fighting.
Dean checked Rakhmonov’s mouth and then found the mouthpiece on the floor of the Octagon.
“He didn’t know,” Rogan said. “If I didn’t tell him, he wouldn’t have known. That’s so crazy.”
Rakmonov defeated Neal via submission in the third round and remained undefeated with a 17-0 record. Neal fell to 15-5. Their bout was initially supposed to take place at UFC Fight Night back in January, but Neal pulled out due to an injury.
Their welterweight bout was then rescheduled for March. However, Neal came into the weigh-ins four pounds over the limit and the fight went on as a catchweight.
Rakmonov has been fighting in UFC since 2020. He submitted Alex Oliveira at UFC 254. Neal was in Dana White’s Contender Series 3 in 2017, defeating Chase Waldon via TKO. He then beat Brian Camozzi via submission at UFC Fight Night in 2018.