ONE’s Chatri Sityodtong criticizes MMA’s 10-point scoring system: ‘Allows for pitter-pattering to win a fight’

Singapore-based ONE Championship is days away from its U.S. debut. With the first ONE event on American soil comes new fighters, rule sets and scoring criteria.

Now more than a decade into promoting combat sports, ONE CEO Chatri Sityodtong thinks his company has found a better way to judge fights than that of the Unified Rules of Mixed Martial Arts, which has been adopted by all state commissions in the U.S. and adhered to by most major MMA promotions.

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Sityodtong is excited to see how some potential new viewers in the U.S. respond to the scoring that will be used at ONE Fight Night 10 on Friday in Broomfield, Colo.

“At ONE, we judge the whole fight,” Sityodtong told MMA Junkie Radio. “What does that mean? As if it’s one giant round. Why is that important? Let’s take a street fight. Let’s say George and I get into a fight, and I’m jabbing him 20 times for the first three minutes and George lands this massive overhand-right and rocks me and I almost lose consciousness and my friends have to stop the fight.

“When you look at that in its entirety, even though I land the jab or the 1-2 20 times for three minutes, but George rocked me where I’m literally almost unconscious, who won the fight? George won the fight. That’s the difference. It’s a street fight mentality.”

The Unified Rules of MMA use a 10-point “must” system, which was adopted from boxing.


Three judges score the fight round by round and award 10 points to the round winner unless there is a deduction from a foul, and nine to the loser. In MMA, dominant rounds can lead to 10-8 scores or even lower, at the judges’ discretion.

Sityodtong thinks that system allows fighters to coast and not go for finishes. He said ONE has a much higher finishing rate than the UFC, Bellator and PFL, and is in part due to the way scoring is done.

“It’s not about pitter-pattering,” Sityodtong said. “Unfortunately, the 10-point must system for MMA allows for pitter-pattering to win a fight.

“I’m not saying everybody pitter-patters. I’m not saying that. That why you see folks like UFC and Bellator with a much lower finishing rate than ONE. It’s because we have the ethos and DNA of martial arts coming from the place of martial arts (Asia), but also the global rule set and the fact that judging is scored in its entirety of the round like a street fight would.”


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Story originally appeared on MMA Junkie