Condit, the new interim champ (Getty)LAS VEGAS -- Watching the main event of UFC 143 from my spot on press row, where the fight can often look quite a bit different than it does on television, I thought Nick Diaz won his interim welterweight title fight against Carlos Condit. I had Diaz winning the first three rounds and Condit taking the last two. The fight was close enough that you can't call it a robbery, but I did feel Diaz was effective enough over the first three rounds to earn the decision.
In the aftermath of the decision, and the heated debate that came with it, though, I've been left to wonder: On what do MMA judges base decisions, these days?
Among the several factors judges are supposed to consider under the Unified Rules is aggression. Diaz was the clear-cut aggressor in the first three rounds.
Octagon control is also supposed to be considered when judging a round. Condit seemed to spend most of the early rounds backpedaling. He even ended the third round literally scooting backwards on his butt to get out of Diaz's way.
And yet, you never seem to hear anything about aggression and Octagon control these days when judging is dissected after the fact.
There was a time when turning an MMA fight into a track meet was not considered a virtue. John McCarthy docked Jamie Varner a point in his UFC 62 loss to Hermes Franca for running when he employed similar tactics. Kalib Starnes was just about mocked out of the sport entirely for running sprints in his UFC 83 bout with Nate Quarry.Read More »from Judging, Koscheck’s options and more: UFC 143 Octagon Observations