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MMA

Mixed martial arts

Mixed martial arts (MMA) is a full contact combat sport that allows the use of both striking and grappling techniques, both standing and on the ground, from a variety of other combat sports. The roots of modern mixed martial arts can be traced back to the ancient Olympics where one of the earliest documented systems of codified full range unarmed combat was utilized in the sport of Pankration. Various mixed style contests took place throughout Europe, Japan and the Pacific Rim during the early 1900s. The combat sport of Vale Tudo that had developed in Brazil from the 1920s was brought to the United States by the Gracie family in 1993 with the founding of the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), which is the largest MMA promotion company worldwide.

The more dangerous Vale Tudo style bouts of the early UFCs were made safer with the implementation of additional rules, leading to the popular regulated form of MMA seen today. Originally promoted as a competition with the intention of finding the most effective martial arts for real unarmed combat situations, competitors were pitted against one another with minimal rules. Later, fighters employed multiple martial arts into their style while promoters adopted additional rules aimed at increasing safety for competitors and to promote mainstream acceptance of the sport. The name mixed martial arts was coined by television critic Howard Rosenberg, in 1993, in his review of UFC 1. Following these changes, the sport has seen increased popularity with a pay per view business that rivals boxing and professional wrestling.

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The Ultimate Fighting Championship (later renamed UFC 1: The Beginning) was the first mixed martial arts event by the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), held at the McNichols Sports Arena in Denver, Colorado, on November 12, 1993. The event was broadcast live on pay-per-view and later released on home video.

UFC 1 used an eight-man tournament format, with the winner receiving $50,000. The tournament featured fights with no weight classes or judges.The two rules, no biting or eye gouging, were to be enforced only by a $1,500 fine. The match only ended by submission, knockout, or the fighter's corner throwing in the towel. Gloves were allowed, as Art Jimmerson showed in his Quarterfinal bout against Royce Gracie, which he fought with one boxing glove. Fights consisted of unlimited 5 minute rounds until a winner was decided.

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John Michael McCarthy, (born October 12, 1962, Los Angeles, California, United States) the 'Octagon's ninth side', is the first head referee for the Ultimate Fighting Championship, a retired Los Angeles Police Officer, and a Tactical Self-Defense Instructor at the Los Angeles Police Academy. He formerly provided commentary and analysis for The Fight Network's coverage of UFC events. He also provided commentary for Affliction: Banned, the first MMA event co-produced by Affliction Clothing and Adrenaline MMA. He has served as head referee for hundreds of bouts in major MMA promotions dating back to 1993. He is also the founder of C.O.M.M.A.N.D., the training and certification school for MMA referees and judges. He also referees in Bellator, and is a qualified boxing referee.

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