A new system for scoring MMA fights is set to be trialled by the Kansas Athletic Commission following heavy criticism of the judges at UFC 247.
KAC’s trial will begin in March, and will allow fans and fighters to know the score at the end of every round.
As it stands, scores are only revealed at the end of a fight when the decision is announced.
But the new system will allow fighters and fans alike to know which way the balance is tipping, something that’s common amongst most other sports.
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KAC commissioner Adam Roorbach says any promotion is welcome to use the new system, and doesn’t understand why something like this hasn’t been implemented already.
“I come from outside of the combat sports world,” Roorbach said (via ESPN).
“But I’ve been a sports fan my whole life.”
“It always mystifies me why the fighters and fans don’t know what the score is until the end.”
“No one has ever given me a good explanation as to why.”
Former UFC featherweight champion Max Holloway is fully behind the idea, after questioning the current system himself following UFC 247.
On Twitter, Holloway wrote: “Is our sport the only major sport where you don’t see score until game is over? What would harm be in judges showing their scores after each round? Honest question not a diss”
Is our sport the only major sport where you don’t see score until game is over? What would harm be in judges showing their scores after each round? Honest question not a diss
— Max Holloway (@BlessedMMA) February 9, 2020
The UFC star went on to say he’s glad the new system is being tried out, and is keen to get involved where he can.
He wrote: “Great to see Kansas testing this. Many other ideas to test to improve judging. If any commissions and regional promotions test ideas let me know? Would love to show up to watch those fights in person”
Great to see Kansas testing this. Many other ideas to test to improve judging. If any commissions and regional promotions test ideas let me know? Would love to show up to watch those fights in person https://t.co/hGwlZGCTdk @marc_raimondi https://t.co/OnKE3O2h0Q
— Max Holloway (@BlessedMMA) February 11, 2020
The first promotion to try out the new system will be all-female Invicta FC at their Phoenix Series 3 event on March 6.
Promoter Shannon Knapp is keen to try out the new scoring method and believes it could help advance the sport.
“If we can help in some way to push the sport forward in a positive direction, that’s what we’re about – we’ll try,” she said.
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UFC’s officiating has come under fire in the past month, most recently following Jon Jones’ narrow victory over Dominick Reyes.
The panel scored the fight in favour of Jones, with one judge questioned over his 49-46 scorecard.
Joe Rogan also criticised the judge for looking away from the fight for a considerable amount of time.
UFC president Dana White meanwhile admitted the scoring on the night was ‘all over the place’.
And it’s not the first time the UFC’s officiating has come under scrutiny.
Officials also came under fire at UFC 246, which saw Conor McGregor mark his return to the Octagon with an emphatic knockout victory over Donald ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone.
White has since said that the officiating is far from perfect, and is something the UFC ‘needs to work on’.
(Featured image source: YouTube/ SBN)