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'Big' John McCarthy to be relicensed in Nevada, expected to work UFC 178

Let's get it on! Popular MMA referee John McCarthy will be officiating UFC events in Nevada once again, pending his official relicensing on August 21st.

Esther Lin

Assuming nothing changes between now and August 21st, you'll soon be seeing Big John McCarthy officiating Las Vegas-based shows once more. According to a report from Yahoo's Kevin Iole, The highly respected veteran referee, who hasn't officiated any events in Nevada since 2007, will be relicensed on August 21st at the next Nevada State Athletic Commission meeting. He'll also be assigned to work on several fights at UFC 178, which is the promotion's next trip to Las Vegas.

McCarthy was a staple of early UFC shows stretching as far back as UFC 2. He'd briefly retired towards the end of 2007 to pursue a career in television commentary for The Fight Network, but found himself back inside the cage in 2008. However, a longstanding feud between him and former NSAC executive director Keith Kizer led to him effectively being locked out of Nevada, which included a 2009 rejection of his application to referee in the state once more. A lot has changed since then, most notably Kizer is out, and McCarthy returned to the Octagon in San Diego for UFC on Versus 2 back in 2010.

The 51-year-old is currently licensed in California, where he worked UFC on Fox 12 last month, Ohio, Utah, and the Canadian province of Ontario. It won't be long before he's back in Nevada and presumably back on the UFC's biggest Sin City cards.

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