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How to improve mma judging while maintaining the 10-point must system


The following is an email I sent to the new committee formed to examine mma rules and scoring headed by Sean Wheelock. It is not edited for grammar or meant to be. It is in its original form.

It’s pretty clear that 10 point must as it is today doesn’t work for mma.
You can have a fight like Machida vs Rampage. Two essentially even rounds, followed by a semi dominant round and the guy who actually dominated a round loses? Or GSP vs Hendricks. A very close fight when you score round by round, but Hendricks won 2 big rounds and GSP arguably barely won 3. If scored as a whole, Hendricks easily won.

I think some ideas to improve the system would be the following:
Encourage 10-10 rounds. Yes, this will make draws more likely but it’s best for the sport. If a round is ultra close, don’t choose to narrowly lean one way- call it even. Will make the scorecards much more accurate.

10-9 round- a round that wasn’t one sided at all but had a guy who clearly edged the round.

Encourage more 10-8 rounds- if the round is quite one sided or if one fighter took a lot of damage – score it 10-8. You shouldn’t have to nearly kill an opponent to get a 10-8 round. Any round that is one sided overall or one sided on damage should be 10-8. Hendo vs Shogun round 3 of the first fight. Hendo nearly finished shogun and did a ton of damage. Shogun did some cage work later but still clearly enough damage to say 10-8. The final round of the same fight- Hendo didn’t take a ton of damage but was dominated on the ground the whole round with dominant positions- once again should have been a 10-8.

Use 10-7 rounds! I know they’re legal, but how do you have a round like the first Edgar vs Maynard title fight round and not score that first round 10-7? Edgar took a ridiculous amount of damage and scoring it just 10-8 is wrong.

Encouraging more diverse scoring will improve scoring. As of now most judges score seemingly dead even rounds 10-9 one way, one sided rounds 10-9, and sometimes even extremely one sided rounds 10-9. Anyone can see that doesn’t work at all.

Encourage 10-10,10-8 and 10-7 and watch how much better scoring gets.
And train all judges in these new methods with examples of what should constitute each score.

Eric Scott

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