UFC on Fox 9 started off a little slow I guess. With only Three finishes on the Eleven fight card, it did leave the sadist in you wanting more but overall the action was fast paced and fun (barring Chad Mendes lay and pray, yeah I know he was carrying an injury). So with all those decisions on the card One of them stood out to me. The fight between Edson Barboza and Danny Castillo brought up a problem that has been highlighted in recent weeks, MMA Scoring/Judging.
The First round between Castillo and Barboza was contested on the feet, with Barboza keeping the range comfortably up until the point that Castillo had Barboza rocked with an overhand right. Barboza and his legs went a little wobbly and Castillo pounced looking for the finish. Several ground and pound strikes and a rear naked choke later Barboza looked almost done. Sadly for Castillo he couldn't get the finish but surely the round constituted a 10-8, with Castillo having Barboza rocked and almost finishing him on more than one occassion.
The next round started and it couldn't have been any more different from the first. Barboza looked to have ridden through the storm and looked fully coherent after the beatdown he had received the round previous. Castillo meanwhile looked like he had punched himself out, his punches and shots were noticebly slower. Barboza started to take over the fight, momentum swinging further and further his way with each chopping leg kick. Round Two and Three were pretty much carbon copies of each other with Barboza controlling every aspect in the last Two rounds, 10-9, 10-9 both in favor of Barboza.
This is where the dilemma begins.....
Danny Castillo most definitely should have received a 10-8 round for the First round (One judge agreed) and Barboza most definitely should have received Two 10-9 rounds for the final Two frames (which he did). In theory the fight should have been given a draw if you follow the rules and regulations of MMA scoring/judging. Saying that I think I couldn't have helped but feel aggreived if the decision was a draw. Having watched the fight as a whole I think that Barboza truly deserved the victory after taking a beating the first round and then coming through strong and picking Castillo apart in the final Two. There is just something that doesn't sit well with me after watching a fighter win Two rounds in a Three round fight and then it being given a draw. I feel it was the right outcome for the fight with Barboza winning overall, but If I had scored it as a judge it should really have been 28-28. Therein lies the problem. The PRIDE (and now ONE FC) rules would certainly help with this problem, but in all honesty I don't think it's that simple. It's a problem that needs to be addressed but with no feasable solutions on the horizon.
Where does MMA scoring/judging go from here??
Written by Ryan Naylor MMA enthusiast/predictor and writer
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