John McCarthy thinks Jorge Masvidal is right about MMA rules that need to be changed.
MMA as a sport is fairly new when compared to the likes of football, baseball, and other mainstream sports. The UFC began back in 1993 as a no holds barred form of fighting. The concept was to pit all different kinds of martial arts against each other to see which was best. As the sport grew in popularity it evolved. Rules were put in place for entertainment value and to protect fighter safety. Now with MMA becoming one of the most popular forms of combat in the world, some believe it is time to take a look at updating the rules.
Jorge Masvidal is one man who would like to adjust certain MMA rules. He was a guest on The Joe Rogan MMA Show and spoke about how he feels some rules favor wrestlers more than strikers. Now a man who is very well-versed in the rules, Big John McCarthy is weighing in.
John McCarthy agrees that it is time to take a look at adjusting the unified rules of MMA
McCarthy is a former MMA referee turned commentator. He spent many years as the third man in the Octagon for the UFC and other MMA promotions. He heard what Masvidal said about the rules favoring grapplers and gave his thoughts on the subject on his show Weighing In.
“The biggest problem with this is perception. Perception’s always been our problem but you know the original unified rules, Josh, we did those back in April of 2001. It’s almost April of 2023, so we’re talking 22 years without really a huge change in the rule set,” he said. “Part of the problem is going to be that you’re going to get regulators that go, ‘oh no oh no’ because they’re comfortable with the rule set that we have and they look and say can a fighter be hurt with a knee strike to the ground well, of course, they can but they can be hurt with the same knee strike in the standing position and that’s legal.”
McCarthy agrees that what Masvidal was saying about not being able to knee a grounded fighter in the head benefits the grappler. He thinks that this rule in particular can be looked at and should be changed. This rule is non-existent in some other organizations, but it is in the UFC at this time.
“So do I think that Jorge has a very good point in that knees to the head of a grounded fighter should be looked at,” he said. “I do I think he’s right, I think he’s a hundred percent right in that we always need to be looking at improving or altering the rules for the betterment of the sport, for the betterment of the fans, the betterment of the fighters. In some cases, it can’t be the betterment of every fighter at every moment because there’s going to be one fighter that’s going to be benefiting from something while another fighter is the person receiving the blow”
There have been several instances where this rule has ended fights in recent years. The most notable might be Petr Yan landing a knee to Aljamain Sterling while he was on the ground. That fight was called a disqualification and Sterling was awarded the UFC bantamweight title. If what Masvidal and McCarthy are proposing were to go through that would have been a very different fight.