ABC announces two changes to the unified rules of MMA

By Susan Cox - July 27, 2022

The ABC has announced two changes to the unified rules of MMA.

Mike Jackson

The Association of Boxing Commissions and Combative Sports (ABC) today passed two changes to the unified rules of MMA.

The ABC’s annual conference took place in Niagara Falls, N.Y.

Mike Mazzulli, the association president, led the five day conference. The first two days consisted of refereeing and judging courses which were led by certified instructors Kevin MacDonald, Blake Grice, and Sal D’Amato. The following three days are spent listening to guest speakers and discussing prevalent issues in the MMA.

Topics such as fighter safety, open scoring, TUE expemptions, weight cutting, and transgender athletes were some of the topics at this year’s conference. Guest speakers included former UFC fighters Jake Ellenberger and Din Thomas.

The final day of the 2022 ABC conference highlighted two MMA rules that were up for vote and passed unanimously.

Rule Change 1: Fighters will now get five minutes to recover after eye pokes

Eye pokes and groin shots have been commonplace fouls in MMA competition.

With a groin strike, the athlete is allowed five minutes to recover. Now, after the 2022 ABC conference, eye pokes will garner the same rule – five minutes to recover, should the fighter want that.

In both cases, should the clock expire (after five minutes), the bout will be called off.

Rule Change 2: Neoprene sleeves are now allowed to be worn by competitors

The Rule Change 2 can be found below (per MMAJunkie):

“‘A competitor may use soft neoprene-type sleeves to cover only the knee or ankle joints. Approved sleeves may not have padding, velcro, plastic, metal, ties, or any materials considered to be unsafe or that may create an unfair advantage. Neoprene sleeves are not considered equipment or clothing and may not be grabbed advantageously inside or as clothing can be grabbed by self. Tape and gauze or any materials other than the approved sleeves are not permitted on the lower body. The sleeves must be black in color with the exception of matching the athletes commission-assigned corners with the sleeves being blue or red or colored as appropriate.”

What do you think of the two new rules implemented by the ABC?

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