At this week’s Association of Boxing Commissions and Combative Sports convention attending regulators have unanimously agreed to adopt an instant replay policy for Mixed Martial Arts.
This is framed as a ‘policy’ item as opposed to a rule or regulation in hopes that all member commissions automatically follow this practice. In realtity, however, a jurisdiction by jurisdiction analysis will be needed to decide to what exent this policy is in play in any given State, Province etc.
The policy reads as follows:
Instant Replay Use in Mixed Martial Arts Competition
The use of Instant Replay in MMA must be set under parameters that insure fairness in the match and a proper outcome at the conclusion of the fight. Instant Replay may not be possible in some smaller shows that are not being videotaped or recorded.
Due to the complexities involved in the sport of MMA, the referee may only use Instant Replay when he/she feels that a “Fight Ending Sequence” was possibly caused by an illegal action (foul) whether intentional or unintentional. At such time the referee and only the referee may call for a review of the last moments of the fight. Once reviewing the replay the referee can either confirm or dispel whether a foul was committed that brought about the fight ending sequence and take the appropriate actions from there.
It should be noted that Instant Replay is not to be used to review the actions of the referee.
Examples of this include:
1. Was the fight was stopped at the right moment?
2. Was there a tap?
3. Did a fighter commit a foul that did not bring about an end to the fight?
If a referee utilizes instant replay, the information obtained from the replay cannot be used to restart the fight as the fight is officially over and may not be resumed.
The sole purpose of Instant Replay in MMA is to allow the referee to make a correct call on the outcome of the fight in calling:
1. A winner of the match
2. Having the fight go to the judge’s scorecards for a Technical Decision
3. Is the fight going to be a “No Contest”?
Instant Replay in MMA can only be used after a fight has been officially stopped, and cannot be resumed.