In the wake of the judging controversy at UFC 247, the Kansas Athletic Commission is ready to make a big change.
On Monday, Kansas boxing commissioner Adam Roorbach told ESPN that the KAC will experiment with “real-time” scoring, commonly known as open scoring, beginning March 1.
What does that mean? The score of a fight will become public knowledge as the fight unfolds, with the commission informing fighters, coaches, broadcast teams, and fans in attendance of the scores after each round.
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“I come from outside of the combat sports world,” Roorbach said. “But I’ve been a sports fan my whole life. It always mystifies me why the fighters and fans don’t know what the score is until the end. No one has ever given me a good explanation as to why.”
Roorbach said open scoring will be optional and doesn’t have to be used at all by promotions. During the course of events, the commission also will be flexible in allowing promotions to use open scoring for select fights – not all of them – and the real-time scores can be given only to select people if the promotion so desires.
Invicta FC will be the first to use open scoring for Invicta FC: Phoenix Series 3, which takes place March 6 at Memorial Hall in Kansas City, Kan.
“If we can help in some way to push the sport forward in a positive direction, that’s what we’re about – we’ll try,” Invicta FC president Shannon Knapp told ESPN.
Judging has been a hot topic since UFC 247 this past Saturday in Houston after the results of several fights – including the main event between Jon Jones and Dominick Reyes won by Jones – were called into question by observers, leading some to suggest open scoring as a possible solution.