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Tag: Big John McCarthy

Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Refereeing — And Why Nevada Needs “Big” John McCarthy


(We’re going to have a clean, fair fight. Obey my commands at all times. If you don’t, I’mma jam this mic so deep in your eye socket you can hear yourself think. / Pic Props: The Fight Network)

By: Jason Moles

There are only three certainties in life: Death, taxes, and dreadful refereeing in mixed martial arts. With tax day behind us and a clean bill of health from the doc, the only thing left to avoid is blunders like those that occurred this past Saturday night at The Ultimate Fighter Season 17 Finale at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas. The offenses ranged from unrepentant fence-grabbing to controversial stoppages. (Surprisingly, we’re not talking about Steve Mazagatti this time.) Sadly, this might have been prevented if Nevada State Athletic Commission executive director Keith Kizer would squash his beef with the godfather of MMA referees, “Big” John McCarthy.

What’s the beef about, you ask? To hear McCarthy tell it, Kizer got upset and took his ball home when UFC’s first head referee said the same thing the fans have been saying for years. Via MMAFighting:

“I thought he was putting some people in positions to judge fights that didn’t understand actually what the fighters were doing, and that’s wrong,” McCarthy explained. “I said that and I stood by it. He got mad, and from that, he has never licensed me again. And that’s okay. That’s his choice. I’m not going to cry about it and worry about it.”

McCarthy apologized publicly to Kizer and three years ago resubmitted his application for licensure. Not surprisingly, he hasn’t heard back, other than an ominous note stating that his “application will stay on file.”

That’s funny; Dana White told CagePotato the same thing about my press credentials. Fast forward to this Saturday, and instead of sitting on press row in sunny California for UFC on FOX: Henderson vs. Melendez, I’ll be sitting in Ben’s living room with a bunch of boxercisers. [Ed. note: How. Dare. You.] Where was I? Oh yeah, most MMA refs are incompetent and terrible at their job.

Case in point: Maximo Blanco vs. Sam Sicilia

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Rickson Gracie’s New MMA Organization Has Some Interesting Rule Changes

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and Vale Tudo legend Rickson Gracie is partnering with a new MMA organization in Brazil, y’all, and he’s putting his own unique stamp on the format and rules. Some are new ideas, many are ones tried before and at least one is just kinda weird.

Our friends over at GracieMag have the full story on the new Mestre do Combate, debuting November 22nd. Below we have some of the highlights.

Teams - Rickson’s organization will use a team format of some sort, akin to what the now defunct IFL used.

Rounds - There will just be two, like in the old Pride non title bouts. The first round will be ten minutes and the second will be five.

Cannot be saved by the bell - So this is interesting. “Fighters will not have the luxury of being saved by the bell: if a submission hold is in place when the bell sounds, they will have to defend or tap out first for the fight to end,” GracieMag reports. What do you think of this rule, nation? I think its a compelling idea, even if it could lead to some messy and uneven arbitrary implementation.

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Check Out the Excellent Trailer for “History of MMA” Right F**king Now

Directed by Bobby Razak, whom you may know as the man behind the amazing Tapout short film, The Future of MMA (that video is after the jump), The History of MMA takes a nostalgic look back at the highs and lows of the sport we love oh so much, and includes commentary from several legends of the sport, including Bas Rutten, Frank Shamrock, Mark Coleman, and referee Big John McCarthy among others. And as luck would have it, Mr. Razak decided to drop the trailer yesterday. We would advise that you check it out.

As you can see, the film touches on many of MMA’s most infamous moments; John McCain’s labeling of the sport as “human cockfighting,” its evolution through Pancrase, and the moment Tito Ortiz decided he had what it took to roc da mic right, yeah. On a side note, we bet Tank Abbott is gonna be pissed when he finds out that his name and photo appear whilst Bas Rutten describes how the UFC used to bring in “big guys with no skill.”

Who are we kidding? Abbott sold his computer for Jim Beam years ago.

Anyway, join us after the jump to check out The Future of MMA, as well as an up close and personal excerpt from The History of MMA featuring Fred Ettish, a fighter whom, after getting obliterated in his only professional mixed martial arts contest at UFC 2, came back to claim his first win in 2009. At age 53.

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Do Over Alert: Mackens Semerzier vs. Robbie Peralta Rematch Booked For UFC on FX 2


(Linka was always Peralta’s favorite Planeteer, but stealing her wind-based attacks?! The man is out of control!) 

Chalk one up for justice. When their original bout back at UFC on FOX ended via an accidental headbutt that knocked Mackens Semerzier out cold, Robbie Peralta was initially gifted a TKO victory. Referee Big John McCarthy and the audience alike were confused to say the least, but assumed that Peralta had managed to sneak in some sort of phantom punch in the mess of things. However, a quick look at the replay revealed a clash of heads to be the cause of Semerzier’s sudden case of narcolepsy, and “Mack Da Menace” immediately appealed the decision to the California State Athletic Commission. In a rare bit of good judgement, the commission sided with Sermizer and changed the bout to a no contest.

Now that all has been rightfully adjusted, these two featherweights are set to battle once again, this time at the UFC’s second FX event, which features a welterweight clash between Martin Kampmann and Thiago Alves as well as the debut of the UFC’s newly added flyweight division.

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“Ask Dan” #2: Fighting Royce, Body Paint, Ping Pong, and Drunks


(Beast-Mode: He invented it.)

Thanks to everybody who submitted questions to Dan Severn last week! Today’s installment of Dan’s no-holds-barred Q&A column is loaded with classic stories and grown-man wisdom, so get comfortable and read on. You can support the MMA living legend by visiting DanSevern.com and Dan’s Facebook page, and you can support us by kicking in a few bucks to CagePotato’s Movember Team Page. Keep growing them mo’s, and post your latest moustache photos on our Facebook wall

skeletor asks: Did you ever feel bad during the no holds barred/no weight classes days destroying guys that were so much smaller then you?

Dan Severn: I never felt bad because of size difference but I did sort of feel bad in general because it was not in my nature to be violent. For example, when I had Oleg Taktarov in the cage and was dropping knees on him, and he couldn’t defend himself. The match wasn’t being halted and he didn’t have the rational mindset to tap out. Even my first loss against Royce Gracie, I was staring right into a man’s soul realizing what crude submissions that I knew weren’t working and recognizing that I was going to have to strike this guy. So I struggled more with my conscience then I ever did with an opponent. I think I am cut from a different cloth than a lot of different fighters who came from checkered pasts and were used to getting into fights. I wasn’t used to that. For instance, if you look at the fight between me and Ken Shamrock, he was adopted and grew up on the mean streets fighting. My upbringing was completely different. I don’t really understand that mentality.

When I was inside Royce’s guard, from my perspective I was in the dominant position because as a wrestler, I was used to being on top. As I am fighting I can see Royce looking over to his father in his corner, and I could see exactly what was going through his mind. His mind was saying, “Hey dad, I’m hanging in here but if you want to throw in the towel, I wouldn’t hold it against you.” Helio actually had the towel in his hand and lifted his arm up a little bit and then shook his head no. I remember thinking, you old bastard…you would sacrifice your kid for Gracie Jiu-Jitsu.

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Check Out The Bum Rush Radio Show Episode 26 With Special Guest Loretta Hunt


Veteran MMA reporter Loretta Hunt joins the show this week to talk about her latest book, “Let’s Get It On! The Making of MMA and Its Ultimate Referee,” which she co-wrote with “Big” John McCarthy and is available in bookstores and on Amazon now.

Hunt touched on the process of crafting the story as well as some of the things she learned while interviewing the revered referee for the book among other topics.

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Interview: “Big” John McCarthy Talks His New Book, Dana White and Fighters Crapping Themselves

By Jason Moles

Somewhere in the back your mind is a Mt. Rushmore of MMA, one for fighter and one for non-fighters. On the latter, you’d undoubtedly have Dana White in addition to your pick of Charles “Mask” Lewis Jr., Bruce Buffer, or Joe Rogan. However, you only get to pick two of the guys I’ve listed because the second spot on the mountain is reserved for the most recognized referee in all of MMA, “Big” John McCarthy.

No one has had a bigger impact on the sport of mixed martial arts without having actually fought someone or having the last name of Fertita or White. Few have stepped inside the Octagon more times than McCarthy and almost no one has helped grow the sport from birth to the dark ages and into the mainstream arena that it is in today. And you thought he just asked the fighters if they were ready and raised the winner’s hand?

“Big” John McCarthy was kind enough to sit down with CagePotato recently to discuss his new book ‘Let’s Get It On!‘ which can be purchased on Amazon. The book is 50% MMA history lesson, 50% autobiography, and 100% worth every penny spent to own a copy and every minute spent reading. So, without further adieu, let’s get it on!

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Reminder: ‘Big’ John McCarthy’s Book Comes Out On Thursday and You Should Buy It


(Video Courtesy of Patrick Kennedy)

Whether you’re interested in some fascinating firsthand accounts of the behind the scenes goings on in the early days of the UFC and the origins of some of MMA’s rules and regulations or you simply want to get to know one of the most important MMA figureheads the sport has ever known, you need to pick up a copy of “Big” John McCarthy’s “Let’s Get It On! The Making of MMA and Its Ultimate Referee.”

The biographical account of McCarthy’s life as a son, brother, father, husband, police officer, coach and referee was co-written by acclaimed MMA reporter and the author of Randy Couture’s book, “Becoming the Natural: My Life In and Out of the Cage,” Loretta Hunt,  and has been lauded by several members of the MMA media as one of 2012′s must-read books for fans of the sport.

Loretta will be our special guest on this week’s episode of The Bum Rush Radio Show on Friday to talk about the book and we’ll have a review of the tome on the site next week.

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GIF Party: MMA Fails, Volume II


Travis Fulton vs. Jeremy Bullock: just what the hell did they expect to happen?


“Try again. Fail again. Fail better.” -Samuel Beckett

Keeping those words from the first collection in our hearts, we’ve assembled the second installment of moments in MMA that some of us (mostly the athletes involved) would like to forget. The rest of us, we want to see those moments saved forever, preferably in a graphic format that loops endlessly.

First, get your mind right with a fight video from the dark ages of MMA, when any human with a pair of pajamas and some Tae Kwon Do could try that crazy ultimate fightin’ stuff. It was 1998, and Travis Fulton had already had over sixty fights. His opponent was Jeremy Bullock, a skinny guy that probably really liked Bruce Lee movies. Make sure to watch Bullock’s interview, where he shares his keys to victory with everyone, including Fulton. Also watch the fight, where Fulton shares his love for a good pro wrestling-style chokeslam with everyone, including Bullock. (Reportedly, Bullock thinks Bruce Lee is a fucking asshole these days.)

Once you’re done with that piece of history, come on in and we’ll share more moments of infamy, awkwardness, stupidity, and shame. It’s Fail GIF time, kids; let’s party.

As always, big ups, props, and mad respec’ to the GIF masters and the websites that host them: Chris Bunch o’ Numbers, Uncle Justice, Damn Severn, Zombie Prophet, Caposa, UpstandingCitizens, MMA-Core, IronForgesIron, and MMATKO. If we forgot you, it’s not on purpose.

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Six Likely Candidates for MMA Fighter Union President

“My thoughts concerning the state of Wisconsin repealing the collective bargaining rights of public employees? I’m glad you asked…”

Several recent, seemingly unrelated news stories in the MMA world have shared a common theme- unions. It’s the lobbying efforts of one union, Dana White insists, to blame for the UFC’s failure to gain a foothold in New York. And some pessimists credit a fear of unionized fighters–more than simple altruism–for Zuffa’s decision to provide accident insurance for its fighters. With all of the talk about a potential MMA Fighters Union, we took a moment to ponder who’s likely to throw their hat in the ring for union president…

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