ABC Launches ‘Athlete’s Voice Committee,’ Includes Seven Retired Fighters

The Association of Boxing Comissions and Combative Sports (ABC) has launched an “athlete’s voice committee” to give fighters a better opportunity to connect with regulators.

According to a release, the committee will help fighters “who wish to better understand vital issues such as how scoring works, appeal rights, contractual literacy workshops, regulatory rights regarding managers and any other educational opportunities that can advance fighter interests in the sport.”

“The ABC hopes this committee will allow all fighters to understand the sport from a regulatory standpoint.” said ABC president Mike Mazzulli. “At every weigh-in I ask fighters questions relating to rules and regulations and it is apparent to me a majority of combative participants do not have clear knowledge of the Rules and Scoring Criteria. This committee will also allow fighters a voice at the table.”

The committee will be chaired by New York State Athletic Commission Executive Director Kim Sumbler and will also include six volunteer members of the ABC: Erik Magraken of the ABC’s Rules and Regulations Committee, referee Jack Reiss, Colorado Executive Director Tony Cummings, Wyoming Executive Director Nick Meeker and South Carolina Athletic Commission Administrator Jon Hollingsworth.

“This is ground-breaking for the industry,” Sumbler said. “Regulators and athletes working hand in hand for the betterment of combat sports. A great opportunity for athletes to have a meaningful and organized voice in their own sport.”

Thus far, UFC veteran Din Thomas and and ex-UFC champ Carlos Newton have been announced as two of the seven fighter respresentatives for the committee.

“I’m so proud to be a part of this historical moment for our community and I’m honored to help where I can,” Thomas said.

Added Newton: “I’d rather fight for the future than relive the past.”

According to a release, the group will work to bring the “most pressing concerns fighters have” before the committeee, and the ABC will provide a form on its website for other athletes who wish to participate. The “fighter’s voice committee” is one of numerous groups overseen by the ABC, including a medical committee, appeals committee and officials committee.
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