MMA Weekly reports:
According to a new rule passed by the Nevada State Athletic Commission Wednesday, referees in Nevada now have the opportunity to get a second look at a fight's end to determine its legality.
The final wording as passed: "A referee at the conclusion of a contest or exhibition stopped immediately due to an injury to an unarmed combatant pursuant to NAC 467.718 and after making a decision, may view a replay if available in order to determine whether the injury in question was caused a legal blow or a foul."
The rule addresses several controversial stoppages in recent history where a fighter lost a contest because the referee couldn't see an injury that forced a bout's stoppage.
A referee may now use instant replay to determine whether the action that caused the injury was legal or a foul and make a decision on the fight's result. Only a referee can decide whether to order a replay.
The ruling could take effect in as little as 30 days.
Fans will remember the controversy that followed the first Kevin Burns vs Anthony Johnson bout at UFC Fight Night 14 in July 2008. Burns repeatedly poked Johnson in the eye and ultimately was awarded a TKO win immediately after a brutal poke right in the eye that necessitated surgery for a detached retina. The NSAC ruled shortly afterwards that they had no mechanism in place for overturning a fight outcome in such an instance.
Happily Johnson got his revenge with a KO victory at the TUF 8 season finale.
This ruling is a major step in the right direction although it will be very interesting to see how it works in application. I seem to remember the NFL struggling with the implementation of instant replay for several years and I'm not even sure if they ever got it right since I no longer watch football or care.