“Don’t leave it in the hands of the judges’, proclaimed UFC President Dana White on multiple occasions.
But why? Why would the face and president of MMA’s most successful franchise always remind his fighters to keep their fight out of the hands of the three ringside officials?
It’s because they are terrible at their jobs and often get the scoring wrong due to an inability to comprehend the nuances of the fight in the grappling range.
This causes many controversial decisions on a scoring system adopted from another sport made by judges who have also been adopted from that same sport.
In a recent interview with Bloodyelbow.com, Joe Rogan touched on the topic of poor judging in MMA.
“I think that in order to be a judge in mixed martial arts at the highest level, I feel like you have to have some deep background in martial arts. You have to have been hit in the face. You have to have been strangled. You have to have been arm barred. You have to know what it feels like. You have to know what is a danger and what’s not. There are certain scenarios a person can get put into where they’re not in danger, but to a person who is uneducated in martial arts it might look like they are, and that can f— up scoring.
We have a problem, and that problem is pretty deep. First of all, judging is on a ten point must system, which is completely stolen from boxing. The system that we have in place right now is ridiculous. Doc Hamilton had a really interesting fix to that system, which was a half point system, which I like better. I think Doc is a very wise man, and he’s also a long time martial artist. He’s been involved in martial arts since I was a baby, probably even before then. I respect guys like that who have been around for a long time. He has an educated take on the current situation that I think should be respected. I think the scoring system needs to be revised, and the way we decide to score things needs to be better defined.”