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NSACs Keith Kizer Responds to Rogan, Joe Answers Back

ante_up812010-12-12 20:05:52 +0000 #1

“If Joe Rogan wants to get on the air and call people names, that’s his business. I’m not going waste my time responding to that.” says Keith Kizer, head of the NSAC.

Briefly addressing Rogan’s criticism, Kizer points to hypocrisy on Rogan and the UFC’s part:

“They always say that ‘the UFC has nothing to do with judging.' Well guess what, they’ve got a big fight coming up in Canada called Koscheck vs. Georges St. Pierre - the UFC and Marc Ratner are flying Tony Weeks up there as a judge. C’mon, Joe. How about some honesty? They’ve taken 90% of our officials with them overseas, as they should. That’s not a knock on Dana [White] and Marc [Ratner]; they know what they’re doing.”

Although Keith feels strongly that Joe Rogan addressed the issue in an inappropriate way, he does acknowledge that there are fair criticisms to be made of the score cards presented by NSAC-appointed judges Tony Weeks and Adelaide Byrd who scored the fight 29-28 for Garcia.

“Yeah, I have a problem with how they scored the third round. Definitely. I mean, they’re both very good judges which makes it all the more surprising.”

Kizer himself attended the event and scored the fight 30-27 for Nam Phan.

Addressing the suggestion to “clean house” that Joe Rogan put forth, Kizer insists that judges have been terminated by the NSAC based on poor overall performance.

“There have been judges that we’ve had here who we’ve sent packing. It didn’t work out. Every judge needs to stay sharp, but everyone makes mistakes.”

But Kizer claims that fans have overreacted on more than one occasion.

“You hear so many people cry ‘robbery’ about this and that. I get emails about it all of the time. I go back and watch the fight, and you say to yourself, ‘What? That wasn’t a robbery. The judges got it right!'”

“A lot of people were saying that about the Rampage vs. Machida fight. Even Dana White said that. You get people who love to overreact. Obviously there are people who want to feel superior than others, trash others. Maybe they are full of some self-hate, some self-pity… maybe that’s Rogan’s piece as well."

Kizer also thinks the tone of the outrage is unacceptable.

“There are ways to criticize professionally, ethically, effectively and legitimately. But then there are ways where you are just trying to make yourself look better.”

Kizer revealed that he approaches evaluating his judges on overall performance. He feels strongly that judges Weeks and Byrd have performed well overall.

“You treat it like a batting average. Say that you score the first 11 rounds of a boxing match right and you get the last round wrong. Sure, you should have gotten it 100% right, but you’ve got a 94% batting average and that’s not bad. But more often than not, when people complain about the judges, they’re just wrong. They are either wrong in the sense that the judges did in fact get it right, or they are wrong in the sense that it wasn’t a robbery and it could have gone either way.”

Although Kizer himself scored all rounds for Nam Phan and finds the criticism difficult to defend this time, he sees an argument that could be put forth for a Garcia victory:

“I’ve been getting all of these e-mails saying ‘What’s wrong with you? Phan dominated every round!' and they’re wrong. You can give Phan that round but you can’t say he dominated. I think MMAWeekly scored that round to Garcia. I think MMAJunkie scored the third round for Garcia. You can’t tell me he ‘dominated’ those rounds.”

One thing is clear: Kizer defends Tony Weeks and Adelaide Byrd’s position at the NSAC:

“It’s like that one umpire who ruined that perfect game in baseball. You can’t be more wrong than that. But you ask the players and they think that, other than that, he’s one of the best umpires in the sport. He’s a top-5 umpire. You can’t screw up much worse than that, but you don’t get rid of him either.”

Rogans Response:


We all know that there's a big problem with judging in MMA, and we all know that Kizer is pretending that there's nothing wrong with having a bunch of people with no martial arts training and no understanding of the sport judging it on a professional level.

There's only one way for me to bring the maximum attention to this issue; and that's to voice my opinion on air during a live Television show where I know that millions of people are going to listen to it.

I understand that this upset him, but he's had plenty of time to correct all of these judging issues, and yet he denies there's a real problem and continues to employ people to judge important fights that are ignorant of many of the details of Mixed Martial Arts.

I also found it quite hilarious that he denies that the NSAC is 100% to blame for this judging situation and even brought up that we're taking NSAC appointed judges to Canada.

The NSAC for all it's flaws is the most important ruling body in combat sports. To bring judges that aren't appointed and approved by the NSAC would open up a whole new can of worms. The question would also come up as to who appoints those other judges?

What is the UFC's relationship with them?

Kizer is a politician, and one of the biggest issues with him is that he's not willing to admit that he's not done the best job possible with the best intentions of the sport and it's participants in mind. This calculated denial of a problem is the reason why these same judges are turning in bad decisions over and over again. In order for him to correct the problem he's going to have to admit that he's been wrong in employing these people, and he's not willing to do that.

Mixed Martial Arts is a far more complicated sport than boxing, and in order for someone to be educated in the subtle details that are playing out in a fight they have to have some martial arts experience themselves. There are PLENTY of fans out there that would do a far better job than these people that he's got working for him that have been grandfathered in from the boxing community. To judge MMA on the highest level is a huge honor and responsibility, and should be bestowed upon people that appreciate that honor and appreciate and understand every single aspect of the sport. Anything less than that is an insult to these great athletes that are dedicating their lives to compete in the toughest sport in the world, and an insult to the fans that have to be disappointed with one terrible decision after the next.

Thankfully we live in a time where the fans have an option to get their opinions out there.

I've seen all the positive support online, and I urge you guys to keep it up. Please keep up the emails, and keep up the blog posts. The only way this thing is going to change is if the people in charge feel like they have to do something about it to keep their jobs intact.

sportsgenius862010-12-12 20:09:30 +0000 #2
Joe is dead on.

The fact that Kizer said Adelaide Byrd is a good judge shows how ****ing stupid he is.

Adelaide Byrd couldn't judge if **** smells, let alone judge a fight.
Snapcat2010-12-12 20:34:58 +0000 #3
Next step for Joe is to call out the bad judges names on a broadcast, however I think Dana has probably told him not to take it any further.
telerion2010-12-12 21:21:02 +0000 #4
To me, Kizer's analogy to boxing seemed a disturbing reflection of his being out of touch with the differences between MMA and boxing.

While I appreciate his broader point there (basically, don't throw the baby out with the bathwater), his analogy misses a critical difference between the two sports. Boxing matches are scheduled for many rounds. If you mess up scoring one round out of every ten, then the likelihood that your error changes the outcome of the fight is very small. Boxing matches rarely come down to how you score any one particular round.

In contrast MMA matches are often decided by a single round. If a judge misscores 1 in 10 rounds the likelihood of a resulting bad decision is much higher. Add to that that the rounds most likely to be misscores are the close ones, and you have a system which is very susceptible to bad judging outcomes.
bhorrrr2010-12-12 21:01:24 +0000 #5
"This wasn't a robbery! I, of course, scored it 30-27 Phan and agree with all of you, but still...!"

E51502010-12-12 21:24:46 +0000 #6

Originally Posted by Snapcat

Next step for Joe is to call out the bad judges names on a broadcast, however I think Dana has probably told him not to take it any further.

Rogan has said multiple times that Dana (or anyone from the UFC) has never told him to talk about one particular thing or don't talk about a certain subject. Joe is the voice of the hardcore fan, and he won't be silenced.



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