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Keith Kizer: 'I Don't See the Controversy' over St-Pierre vs. Hendricks Decision

LAS VEGAS, NV - AUGUST 10:  Executive Director of the Nevada State Athletic Commission Keith Kizer arrives at the Nevada Boxing Hall of Fame inaugural induction gala at the Monte Carlo Resort and Casino on August 10, 2013 in Las Vegas, Nevada.  (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
Ethan Miller/Getty Images
Steven RondinaFeatured Columnist IVJanuary 8, 2017

As you probably heard, UFC 167 came to a very unsatisfying conclusion due to a controversial decision in the main event between long-time champion Georges St-Pierre and Johny Hendricks.

The announcement that St-Pierre received a split decision win (two judges scored the fight 48-47 in favor of St-Pierre, one scored it 47-48 in favor of Hendricks) caused an overwhelming level of backlash from fans, fighters, coaches and even UFC brass who went so far as to label the supposed mishap "the worst decision ever."

At least one person says all is well, though. That would be executive director of the Nevada State Athletic Commission Keith Kizer.

Speaking with Yahoo Sports, Kizer insisted that everything is fine in the "Fight Capital of the World."

I understand the controversy in [Canelo Alvarez vs. Floyd Mayweather] but I don’t see controversy in the GSP vs. Hendricks decision. The media seems split on who won. The LA Times scored it for GSP. All seemed to agree that Hendricks won rounds two and four and that St. Pierre won three and five. The first round could have gone either way.

The NSAC has repeatedly come under fire for both judging and officiating, and Kizer has historically come out to the defense of those being specifically called out. 

When Joe Rogan went on a lengthy rant regarding Leonard Garcia being wrongly awarded the win over Nam Phan in 2010, Kizer fired back, pointing out the fact that the UFC typically turns to the NSAC when arranging international events.

He also came to the defense of Steve Mazzagatti following criticism from Dana White that the ref was slow to react to the submission that ended the World Series of Fighting bout between Jon Fitch and Josh Burkman.

Most famously, he dismissed the notion that judge CJ Ross should be disciplined following dubious scoring of Manny Pacquiao vs. Timothy Bradley (Bradley was inexplicably awarded the win after getting roughed up by Pacquiao) and the aforementioned bout between Canelo Alvarez and Floyd Mayweather (Ross scored the fight a draw while seemingly everyone else scored the fight overwhelmingly in favor of Mayweather).

While many disagreed with the judges' decision in Hendricks vs. St-Pierre, Kizer is correct in his analysis of the bout. All three judges scored Rounds 2 and 4 for Hendricks, while St-Pierre was awarded 3 and 5. Round 1 was the only one in question, and it was razor-thin (you can check out the breakdown of the FightMetric statistics here).

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