FanPost

Judging in mma

     With the amount of controversial decisions lately I decided to give my opinions, some facts and make a fanpost discussing judging as it pertains to mma.  I read an interview with Joe Rogan the other day where he said he talked to Keith Kizer and said he felt that all three judges should have a tv monitor to watch the fight on.  I was very surprised at this, I thought they obviously did.  Everyone at cage side has tv monitors, so i just assumed judges did too.  There are a few reasons that monitors should be used (but obviously listening to commentary shouldn't).  If the fight is against the cage on the opposite side from where a judge is sitting, the referee could be standing in direct view of the action.  Also a camera man could perch himself directly in front of where the action is taking place.  Kizer reportedly told Joe "thats why we have three judges, if one gets it wrong, we have the other two to hopefully get it right."  WOW!  That has to be one of the most asinine comments I've ever heard.  Here's an example that I could think of:

Fighter A is on top controlling the action.  The ref stands in the judges line of sight.  Fighter B locks in an oma plata from the bottom, but the judge cannot see it.  Fighter A then holds his position because if he moves, fighter B will use the oma plata to sweep him and then be in a more dominant position.  From the judges standpoint, fighter A is winning the round by having a dominant  top position and having octagon control.  If indeed said judge had a monitor to look at, he'd clearly see that fighter B is actually controlling the action and is threatening more off of his back than fighter A is from top position.

     In this example it also goes to show how much top position is seen as a more dominant position when it comes to scoring.  There are many instances where a fighter from the bottom is throwing more effective strikes and constantly going for submission attempts yet loses the round by simply being on his back.  Also a takedown is scored a lot better than if a fighter pops right back up from a take down.  Why wouldn't it be equal?  If fighter A gets a takedown and fighter B stands right back up, they should cancel each other out.

     Another thing I constantly see is mma fans saying "compustrike/fight tracker had fighter X winning so therefore it was a bad decision."  I'm personally not a fan of compustrike for one simple reason.  It's as subjective as judging is and isn't a perfect science.  Who do you guys think gathers all the data?  A computer or a human?  Obviously it's just some guy or a group of guys sitting watching the fight and adding up all the strikes, submission attempts and takedowns.  Where it becomes subjective and in some ways redundant is that what you may see as a "power strike" I may see as just a regular punch.  What you see as a solidly landed punch, I may see as a glancing blow (Brocks punch on Couture).  It also doesn't measure amount of time a fighter has his opponent pressed up against the cage or on his back.

     The only way to avoid being on the receiving end of a bad decision is by not letting it go to a decision.  Easier said than done.  Look at the Garcia/Jung fight, they went at it for 3 rounds non stop and no one dropped.  I personally scored the fight a draw, compustrike had the fight going to Jung and as we all know, Garcia won the fight.  So how can 3 entities have 3 different outcomes?  Simple, judging mma is very subjective.  My thought process on this particular fight was that round 2 was a 10-10 round, and 1 and 3 were split.  My assessment (to me) seems more realistic than compustrike, which had one round 10-8 to Jung.  There is absolutely no way any round in that fight was 10-8.  That is almost as bad as the judge that had Frankie Edgar beating BJ Penn 50-45.  Bottome line is there needs to be some tweaking to the judging criteria and maybe the introduction of actual mma judges and not boxing judges that are "grandfathered in" by the commission.  What do you maniacs think?

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