Should more retired fighters become judges?

by Garrett Derr | source:

UFC featherweight Steven Siler began his career as a teenager. The inexperience and lack of knowledge of the sport troubled Siler early on in his career; he held a professional record of 5-7 after just 12 fights.

However, the harder Siler worked and the more he learned, the better he became inside of the cage. Now, at just 25 years young, Siler holds a perfect 2-0 record in the UFC and will look to add to that win total when he meets Joey Gambino at UFC on FX 4.

Garrett Derr: You picked up the sport when you were just 18 years old. Why did you actually choose to pursue MMA rather than attend a college and earn a degree?

Steven Siler: My schooling experience wasn't the best. I didn't really go that often and was lucky to even graduate high school. College wasn't in my future, but I didn't think MMA was either. I was more doing it for fun and to make an extra $50 and to be on local TV. Once I really got into it, I started to get addicted and fell in love with the sport.

GD: Gambino will be making his UFC debut when you two meet and he took the fight on just four weeks notice. Do you think he'll end up regretting this? If so, why?

SS: In my opinion, there's no way you can regret taking a UFC fight at any moment. It's a great experience and its worth taking any fight even if you are in half decent shape to fight. It's a once in a lifetime opportunity and even if the fight doesn't work out, you are more than likely going to get another chance with a real training camp after the fact.

GD: Now for an off-the-topic question. What can the commission do to improve the quality of judging or officiating in MMA? There seems to be controversy with the judging in every fight card as of late. Your thoughts?

SS: One thing I really would like is more ex-fighters to become judges. These guys know the ins and the outs of the sport. It would also give it a more clear cut way to determine how to score a fight instead of it changing from judge to judge.

Read entire interview...


tags: Steven Siler (detail)  Joey Gambino (detail)  UFC on FX 4   


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Recent Comments »

stonepony site profile image  

6/22/12 4:54 PM by stonepony

Agreed Gannon. Kenny Florian or Randy Couture could be judging right now. And I think MOST fighters would have the integrity to judge objectively. I think fighters who would be too biased to judge objectively, would abstain.

stonepony site profile image  

6/22/12 4:52 PM by stonepony

Does current judging suck?Are boxing judges terrible at judging MMA?Would fighters make better judges?I think if you ask any current fighter, or anybody involved with reffing, or, the fans, or even the suits in the various promotions like DW. They'll say yes to those questions.

GladiatorGannon site profile image  

6/22/12 4:49 PM by GladiatorGannon

 Why? If they're the best man for the job, they're the best man for the job. If you''re talking about bias, dont' have them judge fighters they're affiliated with. It's hard to be a good judge without knowing martial arts, which means they're training with a local team anyway.

stonepony site profile image  

6/22/12 4:41 PM by stonepony

Bias is always going to be an issue. They would have to be far enough removed from the fighters they're judging. But, I expect that judging would be better, and more credible, if you used even currently signed fighters.

zebers3 site profile image  

6/22/12 2:49 PM by zebers3

Exactly, if you have a former jackson's fighter judging someone from that camp, especially if they ever trained with them, there is gonna be an immediate bias that is not going to be easy to overcome. Naturally you are going to think that every strike your colleague lands is much more significant than their opponent because you'll be emotionally invested in that fighter. I think the simplest solution as of right now is to just have judge's learn and study the various martial arts and be tested on them. They should be able to name the various techniques and submissions in the grappling world and know which positions are dangerous and more dominant, etc.

brianlg site profile image  

6/22/12 1:46 PM by brianlg

I don't think it should be an absolute yes. I think fighters could have a tendency to be more biased than non fighters. They could favor certain styles (bjj, wrestling, stand up), they could favor certain camps they've trained with, certain fighters, friends, etc. I think it would be more difficult for a retired fighter to not pick favorites, and just stick to the rules for scoring. I think judging should be saved for professional judges, but they need to be fired if they have a tendency to fuck up decisions.

Morgz site profile image  

6/22/12 1:03 PM by Morgz


kungfugrip site profile image  

6/22/12 1:02 PM by kungfugrip

short answer us yes. But there has to be a waiting period from time he/she retires until becoming a judge. There needs to be a time period where fighters change from the time you were fighting

xsrg95 site profile image  

6/22/12 12:57 PM by xsrg95

would be cool

GSP24 site profile image  

6/22/12 12:53 PM by GSP24

Yes!Almedia gave Koscheck the fight over Hendricks. Only a fighter could see that Koscheck slightly won that fight.Current Judges should complete annual training to be licensed to judge MMA.