Ratner defends 10-point must in MMA

 

20 years ago the rules were no eye gouging, no biting, and no fish hooking. Even then there were people complaining about the rules, and at one point Kimo agreed to a fight in Japan that allowed eye gouging and biting.

Mercifully, it never happened.

The sport grew up, but complaints about the rules remain, most notably of late around the 10-point must system. Borrowed from boxing, this system of judging awards the winner of a round 10 points and the loser 9, or very occasionally 8. Critics charge that boxing has more rounds, up to 12, so the true winner tends to come out, but in a standard three round MMA fight, one fighter can strongly edge out one round, and very narrowly lose two rounds, and still lose, even when in the eyes of onlookers he won the fight overall.

However, one of the great combat sports regulators in history, Marc Ratner, thinks the system largely works. Ratner is Marc Ratner is the current Vice President of Regulatory Affairs for the UFC and was formerly the Executive Director of the Nevada State Athletic Commission.

Ratner places the blame for poor decisions on judges with an incomplete sense of how to interpret offense, defense and what a winning round looks like . He argues that when the judging is sound, the 10-point must system works. He adds that there is no clear alternative that would work better.

"I think it does work," Ratner said on Monday's 'The MMA Hour' with Ariel Helwani. "The problem with that system, whether it be boxing or MMA, is that not all 10-9 rounds are equal. Certainly in a three-round fight, that can skew who wins, but for the most part, most of the decisions are good."

"Every once in a while, you're going to get one that certainly goes against public opinion. But MMA is harder to judge than boxing, in my opinion, because you have to know what's going on on the ground."

"It's an evolving discipline and I think we just have to keep on educating and that's part of my goals. No, I don't think it would be that easy to change. I'm not for the half-point system. I can understand it, but I think if the judges really concentrate and do their job, the ten-point must system can work."

Ratner also had some advice for referee 'Big' John McCarthy who made some pointed remarks last month about current Executive Director of the Nevada State Athletic Commission Keith Kizer. McCarthy has questioned the competence of officials in Nevada before, and has not been asked to officiate in the state.

"The truth is, Keith Kizer is a person that does not know combative sports," said McCarthy. "He's never been part of them. He's never done them. He puts people [in positions] at times that maybe shouldn't be put. You tell me why C.J. Ross said the Floyd Mayweather fight was a draw. Did you watch it? My god, I had it 11-1. It wasn't even close. So if you're doing that, you keep putting those same people back, you don't care about the fighters. You don't care about them as athletes, you don't care about their livelihood. And you know what? You shouldn't be in that job. And if someone doesn't like what I said, too bad."

"I don't work for Kieth Kizer. I would work for an athletic commission; love to work for them. I would never work for Keith Kizer. Never. If he's in charge, if he's the executive director, I want nothing to do with it."

Ratner does not believe that the outburst will server McCarthy well.

"I do believe he's one of the top referees in the world and I think you are seeing him more and more," said Ratner. "If I were him, I'd never knock another state commission because the states do band together and they hear that an official is saying something bad about one of their brothers. And I've discussed that with him. I don't think that's the right way to handle it... I think that if he wants to have a complaint, he should do it more internally than externally and not put it out there for the world."

 

Transcription courtesy of MMAFighting

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Recent Comments »

CockneyBlue site profile image  

10/17/13 1:54 PM by CockneyBlue

Where are you getting that criteria from? I know 10-7 is a theoretical score but I haven't seen it written like that.Bottom line, 10 - 10s and 10 - 7s should be used more to provide a clearer reflection of what happened in the rounds.Again, 10 point must is not the issue, every other option I have seen is too complicated. The issue is the interpretation of the judges and their education.

dannyapodaca site profile image  

10/16/13 7:09 PM by dannyapodaca

funny that he would make those comments considering his boss cant keep his big mouth shut.

MAINMAYNARD site profile image  

10/16/13 6:48 PM by MAINMAYNARD

Also if it was done this way you would know exactly how a fight was judged making the judges more accountable for their cards

UGCTT_CloudStrife site profile image  

10/16/13 4:38 PM by UGCTT_CloudStrife

this.  

MAINMAYNARD site profile image  

10/16/13 3:28 PM by MAINMAYNARD

I think a 4 point system could work on the criteria they already judge on striking, grappling , aggression , and octagon control. Award 1 point to the winner of each individual category and none to the loser

BernardHopkins site profile image  

10/16/13 3:26 PM by BernardHopkins

"I think it does work," Ratner said on Monday's 'The MMA Hour' with Ariel Helwani. "The problem with that system, whether it be boxing or MMA, is that not all 10-9 rounds are equal. Certainly in a three-round fight, that can skew who wins, but for the most part, most of the decisions are good." "Every once in a while, you're going to get one that certainly goes against public opinion. But MMA is harder to judge than boxing, in my opinion, because you have to know what's going on on the ground."     completely out of touch with reality

JimmersonzGlove site profile image  

10/16/13 2:34 PM by JimmersonzGlove

It only works if you get more loose with the scoring. Stop discouraging judges from using 10-10 rounds and get looser with giving 10-8s.

Humanityisthedevil site profile image  

10/16/13 2:26 PM by Humanityisthedevil

I'm with this dude.We need better judges not a better system. But getting knowledgeable, experienced, impartial judges is obviously easier said than done. There is a lot of noise about the judging criteria in this thread, but the only alternative that has been suggested that makes any sense to me is that the Pride system was better. Well, here it is:If the match reaches its time limit then the outcome of the bout is determined by the three judges. The fight is scored in its entirety and not round-by-round. After the third round, each judge must decide a winner. Matches cannot end in a draw. A decision is made according to the following criteria in this order of priority:-The effort made to finish the fight via KO or submission-Damage given to the opponent-Standing combinations and ground control-Takedowns and takedown defense-Aggressiveness-Weight (in the case that the weight difference is 10 kg/22 lb or more)I just don't see how giving this framework to judges (The ones we have, not the ones we want) would make anything better.

ChokeEmOut site profile image  

10/16/13 2:24 PM by ChokeEmOut

lol..of course he does..he is a former NSAC crony. I wouldn't expect him to give a shit about the rules and judging issues plaguing MMA

Lazer MMA site profile image  

10/16/13 2:22 PM by Lazer MMA

LMFAO Where is the "bad application of the current rules" below FFS? Hell in this case (below) even if the round only warranted a 10-9 but was much more valuable (because of damage)it still would be better then the two razor close 10-9's described. "In a fight if you have two 10-9's that were razor close but fair and you have a 10-8 where there was good damage done:1. A draw is NOT fair in the 1st place. The fighter who got the 10-8 really won the fight."" Personally I think the fight you described is inconclusive, since neither guy was stopped. I'd be happy to have that fight scored a draw," - Just stop posting



 

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