Mixed martial arts is still a brand new sport in the state of New York.
The most recent controversy stems from the UFC 210 co-main event between Chris Weidman and Gegard Mousasi. Mousasi ended up winning controversially after he kneed Weidman in the head twice, where it appeared that Weidman’s hands were on the mat, which would have deemed the knees illegal. Referee Dan Miragliotta put the fight on hold after the controversial knees and then they were later found to be legal. However, ringside doctors ruled that Weidman was unable to continue fighting.
In the UFC 210 post-fight press conference, UFC President Dana White said that with the commission in New York, it is like stepping back in time when most commissions were just getting things figured out.
“Here’s the thing, with the New York State Athletic Commission, it’s like we’re in 2001 again,” White said (transcribed by Bloody Elbow). “These guys haven’t done big mixed martial arts fights. These guys have to get some experience.”
“And as a fighter, I say it all the time. You have to be on your toes, and you gotta be ready to go. Many times even in great states like Nevada, you’re battling the referee and the judges. You have to fight to win, fight to finish.”
With the sport being new to New York, White says that issues will surely come up but will get better as time and experience conditions the NYSAC.
“The New York State Athletic Commission has been great. Bad situations happen sometimes, and these guys are still learning,” White said. “Obviously, these guys are gonna get a lot of small organizations come in, and their refs, their doctors, their commission will all get more work, and will get more comfortable with the sport of mixed martial arts.”
What are your thoughts on the New York State Athletic Commission and the result of Mousasi vs. Weidman? Share them with us in the comment section.
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 4/10/2017.