Nov 19, 2010
(PRESS RELEASE) -- The California Amateur Mixed Martial Arts Organization, Inc. (“CAMO”) announced today that it will implement a new scoring system, specific to MMA, for select amateur mma events starting in 2011.

“One of CAMO’s primary goals has always been to help the sport of MMA continue to grow and advance, so we are very excited about testing a new system of scoring for our sport,” said Jeremy Lappen, CEO of CAMO. “The creation of unified rules and the ongoing sanctioning by State Athletic Commisions have been very important steps in the evolution of MMA and establishing it as a legitimate sport. Over the years, our sport has evolved and grown and as we have seen very clearly recently, it is now time that we take a serious look at revising the scoring system to maximize our ability to achieve fair results and to help the sport continue to grow.”

The new scoring system that CAMO will begin implementing is known as the Mixed Martial Arts Specific Scoring (“MMAS”) system and was developed by Nelson “Doc” Hamilton, a widely regarded expert on officiating and an active CAMO Official. The MMAS system tracks the Ten‐Point‐Must system but allows the judge to award half‐points when a half‐point score more accurately reflects the performance of the athlete.

“Our premise is that the Ten‐Point‐Must System, as used by the sport for which it was created, boxing, has proven inadequate for use in a multi‐discipline sport like MMA, particularly when scoring a very close round,” stated Hamilton. “The nature, variety and diversity of what regularly occurs in most MMA rounds demands a scoring system with a finer gradient of options to ensure more fair and accurate scoring.”

In addition to revising the numerical system that allows judges to award scores that accurately reflect performance, the MMAS system also serves to revise the nature of the prioritized criteria that is used as a context for a judge to award points. Under the MMAS system, the criteria for which performance is measured gives the most weight to damage that is inflicted by an athlete and is followed by effective striking and grappling which are equals. Last in priority, a judge may give weight to effective cage control which incorporates aggression.

CAMO offers a unique venue for the MMA community to test the results of a new scoring system at the amateur level. With over 1,000 active amateur athletes and more than 100 fully regulated events each year, CAMO will be able to collect large samples of comparison data on the new scoring system in a quick and uniform manor.

George Dodd, Executive Officer of the California State Athletic Commission (“CSAC”) and proponent of the MMAS system will closely monitor the effects at the amateur level. “Because CAMO is a large organization and regulatory body under the CSAC, it is the perfect place to study the effects of the new scoring system,” said Dodd. “Many athletic commissions will be reluctant to try and experiment with scoring changes at the professional level and the more appropriate venue for this trial run is in the amateurs.

Working with CAMO, CSAC will be able to evaluate the new scoring system and to provide feedback to other athletic commissions throughout the United States. CAMO along with the State Athletic Commission is not only a program to develop amateur athletes, but a program that can help advance the sport of mixed martial arts.”

CAMO plans to begin training officials within the next two months in order to start scoring bouts with the MMAS system in January of 2011. “Although there will always be a level of subjectivity and human error in judging, we [CAMO] seek to minimize that effect through frequent and thorough training of our officials’” said JT Steele, President of CAMO. “We are very privileged to have world class officials such as Doc Hamilton, Herb Dean, and John McCarthy training our officials and to be working side‐by‐side with them on a weekly basis. We are confident that the officials will be properly trained and more accurate scoring will be generated from this program which will benefit the sport of mixed martial arts as a whole.”

About CAMO:

California Amateur Mixed Martial Arts Organization, Inc. (CAMO) is a non‐profit 501(c)(3) public benefit corporation created to oversee and maintain the safety, credibility and integrity of amateur MMA in the State of California. Founded in 2009, by Jeremy Lappen and JT Steele, CAMO is dedicated to helping foster the growth of the sport of amateur Mixed Martial Arts and to oversee the health, safety and welfare of the athletes that choose to participate in it. On August 24, 2009, the California State Athletic Commission officially delegated to CAMO the exclusive authority to regulate Amateur Mixed Martial Arts in the State of California.
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