Home News Editorial: UFC 163: Lyoto Vs Davis Worst Ruling I’ve Seen!

Editorial: UFC 163: Lyoto Vs Davis Worst Ruling I’ve Seen!


WOW!  I have to admit my jaw dropped when I was at UFC 157 earlier this year and Machida pulled in a win over Henderson in what was perhaps one of the most uneventful bouts I’ve ever witnessed.  But last night…  words just have no ability to even describe or justify my personal aggravation with the entire judging process in UFC bouts.

To say the win was a theft is like saying Hiroshima was a stick of dynamite.

So everyone is completely bitching and moaning on Facebook and many of our peer publications are out there scratching their heads wondering what the hell happened in the judges booth that night.  Well we have something for you…

UFC 163 Score Card - Phil Davis Vs Lyoto Machida


Sadly when you look at this score card it just doesn’t make much sense.  Awarding points for those last second take downs seems like a cheesy move.  Yet, in the strictest of terms it is valid to do so.  Here-in lies the problem with UFC’s judging system.  It just doesn’t make enough sense to everyone watching the fight.

There needs to be a way of gauging a fight based on performance that isn’t arbitrary.  First of all one issue at hand which is very relevant here is takedowns.  In the unified rules and the UFC rules takedowns are mentioned in several areas, none of which specifically talk about takedown methodology on it’s own, only how they may be used in relation to grappling, countering, octagon control, and the list goes on.

When you read the rules they seem to make sense, but then when you watch the fight, it doesn’t always translate so easily. So who the hell won the fight last night?  Ask the fans and no doubt they will tell you it was Machida and not Davis.  Ask the judges, and they’ll likely stand by their decisions.  As the fighters and only Davis will hesitantly defend his victory.

Is he wrong?  Were the judges wrong?  I ‘m not a judge, nor am I a fighter in the UFC, so to say either are wrong is to presume quite a bit.  I can tell you this, as an observer.  I was at 50/50 on a split decision win in either direction or maybe a unanimous decision win for Machida.

That’s what I saw with my own two eyes and that is what I felt would be justified in my heart.  I believe many fans would agree and some might even say I am being too unbiased.  Either way… the fact is the fight is over and now we all have to sit here with this dirty feeling, like we had been robbed in our sleep of a just decision.

Some serious thought needs to go into the judging process and how to improve it.  You can’t have upsets like this happen, especially on a PPV card.  If your criteria (meaning the UFC’s criteria) isn’t in sync with your fans then you have a problem.  One that will either be fixed for you through fan abandonment or competitive improvement.  Bellator anyone?.

OK.  I am done with my rant.  I’ll leave you with one more bit of fun reading.  A direct link to the UFC’s rules for judging.

Have fun!  UFC Unified Rules and Regulations – Section 14, Judging.




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Luca Rajabi
Luca has been passionate about martial arts and eastern philosophies since childhood. As an athlete, inventor and entrepreneur Luca founded SciFighting on the principal lessons learned from his life experience "fighting" to preserve his health and fitness. Although born with inherently poor and inconsistent health he pushed forward to learn as much as he could about the sciences of technology, medicine and mental health. Years of study, working with physicians and combined analysis finally began to bare fruit by his early twenties. Starting with Fencing, cross training and body building then moving to Boxing, Western Kickboxing, Muay Thai, Brazilian Jiujitsu, Eskrima and an eclectic assortment of self defense techniques. Luca's core philosophy is that to win a battle every fighter must balance their mental and physical health. Luca has said that "With well developed technique, conditioning and mental focus a sound strategy will most often win over brute strength alone." It is in this spirit that he passionately advocates for the "Science of Fighting".