||03-11-2011 06:29 PM
Espn UFC Podcast: Dan Hardy suggests 9 judges for MMA scoring minefield
judging in MMA remains one of the most contentious areas within the sport. It remains open to debate. Every other week we hear ‘robbery’ when results are announced . Barely a week goes by without the subject being debated, and there are times when scoring and judging in MMA appears to be a dark, muddy mire.
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The three-round contest last week between Diego Sanchez and Martin Kampmann at UFC: Live split writers, fans and judges. On this week’s ESPN UFC Podcast, hosted by your correspondent, we (I’m joined each week by Ben Blackmore deputy sport editor as ESPN.co.uk and Chris Park UK rep for MMA Torch) delved deep into MMA judging, speaking to respected referee Marc Goddard, and called on the view of UFC welterweight Dan Hardy.
Hardy thinks no less than nine judges should be used for MMA fights, and believes that as the sport progresses, ex-fighters should join the ranks of judges, and gain schooling at seminars. Hardy also revealed that he, too, would like to be involved as an official, judging fights when his career over. Hardy is in preparation for UFC Fight Night Seattle on March 26, and picked holes in the armoury of his opponent Anthony ‘Rumble’ Johnson.
Hardy believes that Johnson has cardio problems… and reveals the two men are friends, so this will not be a smack-talk-fulled few weeks.
Referee Goddard was enlightening on the Unified Rules of MMA, and argued that that we should all – fans, writers, observers and officials – revealing that when he gives seminars 9 out of 10 judges sometimes see fights differently. Marc is convinced that many MMA fans, new and old, do not understand the Unified Rules, and how to apply them. H e explains it is how ‘effective’ is applied and interpreted in four different areas. His findings in his clinics that so many different interpretations to fights can be found by judges is fascinating. The controversy over judging will never really go away, eithe, as far as I am concerned. Shocking, or the way it will always be ? Boxing has had contentious decisions for 150 years, so how will MMA, with multiple skills involved, ever refine its scoring ?
Or do we just love it as part of the sport, the human error, perception and subjectivity that leaves us all discussing the facets to exhaustion, in the office, down the pub, or over the dinner table ?
Elsewhere, Georges St-Pierre has been in London this week, training with Roger Gracie behind closed doors – jiu jitsu against Jake Shields ? Perhaps, but my sources tell me he has also been training sprawl and brawl, too, with several British fighters. Who said the UK was behind the rest of the world when the best come here to train (I know – Roger is Brazilian). Debate with me on the merits of a GSP superfight against Anderson Silva. My view is that it is a step too far.