Vice President of Regulatory Affairs for the UFC Marc Ratner and United States representative Markwayne Mullin appeared at an Energy and Commerce Committee on Nov. 9 to discuss the UFC within concern of the Muhammad Ali Expansion Act. During the presentation, the two entered a discussion concerning the UFC’s ranking system.
Mullin argued against the legitimacy of the mixed martial arts promotion’s ranking system, as Marc Ratner offered a rebuttal. Check out the argument down below:
Mullin: “If the UFC is considered a professional sport, then it should be on a merit-based rankings system when the fans know the No. 1 contender actually has a shot at the title. Because we haven’t seen that at (middleweight). How did Dan Henderson – and I like Dan Henderson, this is no knock on him – but he wasn’t even in the top-10, and when was he last in the top-10? He got to fight Bisping for the title shot. Did the (No.) 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2 and 1 (ranked contenders) refuse?
Ranter: “When Dan Henderson fought Michael Bisping, it was a natural rematch from a fight four or five years ago.”
Mullin: “But then it wasn’t a title shot, but yet it was for a title shot. Then that means the world championship belt that the UFC has isn’t really a world championship belt. It’s really what (UFC Chief Operating Officer) Lawrence Epstein personally told me: It’s simply an award they bestow on the best fighter that night. That’s insulting to every professional athlete.
“How did (Georges St-Pierre) get a fight for the title when he hasn’t had a fight in four years, much less at 185 pounds, where he never fought for the belt?”
Ratner: “St-Pierre hadn’t fought in four years, you’re absolutely right.”
Mullin: “So how did he get a title shot?”
Ratner: “St-Pierre was a former champion, a former pound-for-pound best fighter in the world, according to our…”
Mullin: “So he still didn’t fight for a title. He fought for an award bestowed upon the best fighter of the night.”
Here is the complete replay of the session: