UFC institutes new rules amid controversy

Following a week of controversy, after the Georges St. Pierre and B.J. Penn fight in which Vaseline was applied to the Canadian by one of his cornermen in between rounds, the UFC has instituted new policies regarding cut men and how the corners are allowed to enter during the breaks in between rounds for this weekend’s UFC Fight Night 17 show in Tampa, Fla.

According to sources close to the situation, the UFC has now instructed that cornermen associated with the fighters will no longer be allowed to handle the Vaseline used in between rounds to treat and prevent cuts.

The UFC will now provide one cut man for each corner for the fight. Only two people are allowed to enter the Octagon between rounds, so if a cut man is necessary to apply Vaseline or work on a cut, one of the other cornermen working with the fighter must exit the cage to allow the cut man to work.

This is all following the controversy surrounding St. Pierre cornerman Phil Nurse at UFC 94 applying Vaseline to his fighter’s face in between rounds and then moving his hands to the Canadian’s chest and back to help with a breathing technique. Because Nurse’s hands may have still had Vaseline left on them, Penn’s camp filed a letter with the Nevada State Athletic Commission urging an investigation into the matter.

Though there has been no official word from the UFC if this ruling will be instituted in other states or if Florida previously approved the matter, several MMAWeekly.com sources indicated that the new rules regarding Vaseline use have been presented as permanent.

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    Updated Saturday, Feb 7, 2009