I dont think it definitly will be banned I just think it is quite possible given that I would see the issue of unregulated MMA being banned once the sport is regulated as something both liberal and conservative politicions would agree on which would fit our present political climate.
I also think it may not be a bad thing for unregulated MMA to be banned and could perhaps be something the governing body should push for.
This would eliminate the cowboys and make the sport safer.
But it would limit choice to some degree, how much of a bad thing that is im not sure.
Just came across this thread again after being away from the forum for a good while. I'd just like to state a few points, not in any particular order, concerning governing/sanctioning bodies.
In all combat sports there should be a form of regulation. Even though the UFC does not sanction events via a particular body per se, they do have to adhere to the regional various Athletic Commissions of the US, which in effect, does regulate the sport and insist on minimum standards, of which I believe the UFC not only meet these standards but also far exceed them, making their brand of MMA the safest around.
Here in the UK we do have various private bodies such as ISKA, IKF/ISCF, and now the Austria based WKF, who although are all mainly kickboxing bodies, have ventured into sanctioning MMA events. Now I read on here a year or two ago about iska sanctioning events and it was met with quite a bit of negativity with statements like "kickboxing cashing in on MMA..." and alike.. Now, using iska as an example; it's mma division is headed up (or was) by the reputable Lee Hasdell, one of the pioneers of UK MMA, these bodies have good policies and practices in place that could make a show run a lot more professional than a lot of shows are being run at the minute. Obviously there are exceptions.
These bodies also have some excellent officiating teams that also help raise standards.
So what is stopping promoters sanctioning events and operating under regulated terms?
Is it money?
I suspect that money does play a role, however, it's probably more to do with control. Why would a promoter want to sign over control to a third-party when at the minute a promoter can simply choose their own officials, chop + change things to suit their own needs, and basically do as they please. The result? = the current state of play with differing rules, practices, health and safety, etc, and not to mention the numerous 'British' and, ahem, 'European' champions. (Championship titles are a different issue altogether)
A regulating commission / governing body
This would certainly help raise standards, and in the past when I have ran kickboxing and mma shows I have sanctioned my events through the wkf (world kickboxing fed'n) who, for a fee, assisted me with:-
- Provided me with an independent supervisor to oversee refereeing and officiating
- an officiating team - referees, judges, time-keepers, etc
- conducted/overseen and recorded the weigh-in
- insist on minimum level of medical supervision
- enforced all rules & regulations in according to their pro or amateur rulebook (I must note here that the wkf amateur mma rules are not the same as a lot of people are used to, but these rules are due to be changed at the world congress in 2012 I am told)
- helped me source event insurance
- helped with match-making
They even hold mma events around the World as they are present in 103 Countries.
All in all it helped make the events run fairly and smoothly.
The only negative issue I have with these sanctioning bodies is that they have their own titles also, which does add to the confusion of the whole who's the real champion situation. On the other hand, independent promoters can request area titles, which is good.
But back to the real issue: Regulation.
Who in reality, is willing to run their bouts under nationally agreed terms?
Which promoters are willing to sanction their events and give way power (so to speak) to a third-party?
The answer unfortunately: Very few.
Fight sports do need regulating. The BBBoC is only a private LTD company, nothing more. They do a good job of regulating pro boxing. They also work with International bodies so they keep their own brand/body recognised - ie the WBC will not sanction a World title in the UK unless it is sanctioned via the BBBoC.
Can this be done with MMA? I can't see the UFC approaching a UK-body to sanction their UK events.
Obviously fell on it's arse this.
There are so many people attempting it you would be amazed but nobody is doing all that is required.
Well that is not completly true there are a couple of characters heading in the right direction with regards to getting recognized by Sport England but with regards to unifying the sport and governing it nobody is even a little bit close.
People in the sport are their own worst enemy, and by that i mean people that put shows on without consistency in the rules:- amateur, amateur NSAC, semi-pro, pro-B, pro, etc... Bullshit baffles brains so if there a million different sets of rules then who puts forward the rules for amateurs and professionals to the sports council/sport England, etc? And where does smei-pro fit in? It wouldn't really.
Kickboxing's many various rules:- full contact, low kicks, k1, muay thai c/b/a classes, etc, have been going a lot longer than MMA and even they are in a sad state towards getting recognised by Sport England.