I’m not sure if this has been addressed before … I know Big John has mentioned in passing why he retired from refereeing but I haven’t seen it explained in this much detail outside of a TV interview that I was way too lazy to transcribe. But here it is: the reason why.
Z: Why did you walk away?
JM: I walked away because I was frustrated. I was frustrated with the way some things were being handled. I didn’t believe that there were people being put into positions that had the ability to judge fights or referee fights, that knew what they were doing. That bothered me. It bothered me because I’m looking at a judge that is gonna judge a fighter’s fight and he doesn’t understand what those fighters are doing. And this person has the ability to affect the fighter’s livelyhood. And it’s wrong. And I felt like a hypocrite because I worked for the commission and they were allowing this kind of person to be in a position of power and to have that say over who’s going to win the fight. I just didn’t want to be part of that.
JM: It just upset me to the point where I didn’t want to do this anymore. I love the refereeing. I love doing that. It’s just people that are out there, they just don’t know what is going on in a fight. Fighters are doing things on the ground, they have no concept of what is taking place. They really don’t understand who is in control of the fight. They don’t understand the techniques that are being applied. And if you don’t understand that, how are you able to make an educated judgment on who wins that fight? You can take a look at the last Ultimate Fight Night. Evan Tanner against Kendall Grove. There was a judge there who gave that fight to Evan Tanner. How do you do that? I don’t know. Taking nothing away from Evan, he’s a great fighter, but he did not win that fight. And to say he did, it’s a crime.
Z: How are these incompetent judges getting their jobs?
JM: You know what, you tell me.
I think we all know how stupid judges and refs can be … as a whole, many commissions seem to be running ‘good ol boys’ clubs where it’s not what you know but who you know. But I’m surprised that it’s so bad that Big John would be willing to retire in order to not be associated with it any more.