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NYSAC: ‘The UFC made no objection’ when we assigned Todd Anderson to ref Holm-de Randamie

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The New York State Athletic Commission has released a statement on the decision to assign referee Todd Anderson to the UFC 208 main event.

UFC 208: Holm v Randamie Photo by Anthony Geathers/Getty Images

The UFC 208 main event between Germaine de Randamie and Holly Holm was marred by refereeing controversy, as Todd Anderson did not deduct any points from de Randamie for strikes thrown after the horn had sounded to end rounds 2 and 3. Anderson warned de Randamie at the end of round 3 that a point would be taken if she committed the infraction again. De Randamie went on to beat Holm by unanimous decision (48-47 x3) to become the UFC’s inaugural women’s featherweight champion. Needless to say, Dana White was not pleased with Anderson’s performance.

“I feel that the ref from New York shouldn’t be ref-ing a main event fight. They don’t have enough experience,” White said. “He should not have been in there. But again, we don’t make those decisions, the commission does. That was a bad decision by them. If that guy takes a point for hitting after the bell, it’s a draw — the only possible way this night could be any more (expletive).”

MMA Fighting has since received an official statement from the New York State Athletic Commission, which effectively put the onus on the UFC for not objecting to their decision to assign Anderson to the main event.

“The New York State Athletic Commission maintains a roster of highly qualified referees for assignment to bouts held in New York State,” spokesperson Laz Benitez said. “The Commission, as a matter of policy, shares a full list of referees and assignments with promoters well in advance of each card. This included sharing with the UFC that Mr. Anderson would referee Saturday's main event. The UFC made no objection.

“The Commission strives for excellence, and will appropriately review any and all complaints lodged against any Commission licensee.”

Anderson was not a referee at UFC 205 in Manhattan, but did officiate three fights at UFC Fight Night: Lewis vs. Abdurakhimov in Albany. He’d also reffed the Bellator 134 main event between Emanuel Newton and Liam McGeary in Connecticut. Anderson also has prior experience as a judge, albeit exclusively for Bellator MMA and not for any UFC events. Essentially, Holm vs. de Randamie was the most high-profile fight Anderson had officiated to date.