When one thinks of sports and statistics, mixed martial arts doesn’t readily come to the front of the list. Statistics seem more in-tune with sports such as baseball and football, but MMA does have key numbers and percentages.
The most prevalent of numbers in finishing rate – how many fights are concluded by knockout, TKO or submission, and not left to the ever-wandering wisdom of judges.
As the Maximum Fighting Championship puts a bow on 2013 and looks ahead to the array of possibilities for the 2014 campaign, it’s interesting to look back upon one of the most significant changes the organization made and how it relates on finishing rate. As the MFC moved into 2012, the decision was made to focus far less on a fighter’s name and put more emphasis on how many of his fights came to an end in dramatic fashion.
In simple terms, the MFC wanted fighters who brought excitement to the ring. We wanted fighters who wanted to win, not ones who just didn’t want to lose. And there’s a big difference.
From MFC 32 to MFC 38 there have been 42 main-card fights that have aired live on AXS TV Fights. Of those 42 fights, 27 have been ended with a clear-cut finish of T/KO or submission, for a finishing rate of 64.3%. A further breakdown shows 16 results by T/KO, 11 via submission and 13 from decision. One fight was declared a draw and there was one no-contest bout.
Since the ‘finish first’ edict was put in place by the MFC matchmaking team, only one event has had more than two decisions on the main card and that was MFC 32 when they were a staggering four fights left to the judges. From that point forward, no event had more than two decisions and four events had just one fight go the distance.
Take off MFC 32’s four decisions of the six main-card bouts and the finishing rate soars to 75%.
A look back at the past seven MFC main cards:
MFC 32 – 1 TKO, 1 submission, 4 decisions = 2 finishes
MFC 33 – 1 TKO, 1 submission, 2 decisions, 1 draw, 1 no-contest = 2 finishes
MFC 34 – 4 T/KO, 1 submission, 1 decision = 5 finishes
MFC 35 – 2 TKO, 2 submissions, 2 decisions = 4 finishes
MFC 36 – 2 T/KO, 3 submissions, 1 decision = 5 finishes
MFC 37 – 2 TKO, 2 submissions, 2 decisions = 4 finishes
MFC 38 – 4 T/KO, 1 submission, 1 decision = 5 finishes
Finishing rate can be further broken down into each individual weight class. Loaded weight classes vary from time to time in the Maximum Fighting Championship based on the strength of available talent. The past two years have also seen the MFC re-launch the heavyweight division as well as adding both the bantamweight and featherweight divisions to the talent pool.
The lightweight division has long-been one of the MFC’s deepest divisions and the past two years have kept that run alive with 11 fights in the 155-pound ranks. Six of those 11 fights have ended with a finish while four have gone to decision. The lightweights and the welterweights need the biggest push when it comes to finishing fights as the 170-pounders have managed just three of seven to avoid the judges.
The brightest stars when it comes to finishing rate have been the heavyweights and middleweights. Four heavyweights have all ended in a clear finish – three by knockout and one via submission. While for years the middleweight division was virtually empty, the MFC has found an impressive list of competitors of the past two years which has resulted in 11 of 15 fights ending in knockout or submission.
It’s obvious that the move to find finishers has paid off in a big way for the MFC which is why all new talent coming into the Maximum Fighting Championship ring are recruited to the show because they want to win and be exciting in the process.