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28th May 2018

Man who literally wrote the book on MMA disagrees with controversial Darren Till decision

"I'm pretty sure about this because I wrote it."

Ben Kiely

Who better to ask about the controversial Darren Till vs Stephen Thompson decision than the man who wrote the book on MMA judging?

The Darren Till vs Stephen Thompson main event in Liverpool wasn’t without its controversy. Hometown hero Till took the unanimous decision, but the judges’ scorecards raised more than a few eyebrows.

Till got a brief knockdown in the fifth round and according to the unofficial statistics, he outstruck ‘Wonderboy’ in terms of volume. But as any MMA fan worth their salt will know, the striking figures the UFC puts out aren’t necessarily representative of the fight.

A lot of folks had an issue with the judges scoring Till as a 49-46, 49-46, 48-47 winner over Thompson. Perhaps the most notable critic of the decision was ‘Big’ John McCarthy. He believes that Wonderboy took the first three rounds against Till. He even went as far to say that it was ‘sad’ how people who are supposed to know the sport don’t know how the sport should be scored.

Prior to taking up a broadcast role at Bellator, McCarthy was one of the most famous referees in the sport. In fact, he played a pivotal role in the creation of the sport’s rules. He was in that room while the unified rules of MMA were being drawn up.

When his comment about the decision started receiving backlash, he was quick to offer some education. He knows the rules.

After all, he wrote them.

He also addressed those striking figures that get read out on the live UFC broadcasts. He believes these numbers have skewed people’s judgment of how fights play out.

There you have it, it’s not a given that the numbers don’t lie.