Scott Coker, the president of Bellator, has recently revealed he is concerned about the new and stricter policies on weight cutting and dehydration in California. He greatly concerned to the point the he not sure if bringing the a big-ticket fight in California in the future would be the best thing to do.
“I think that they’re reacting, but I think the consequences could be impacting, like how do you feel comfortable bringing a title fight here that has to make a certain weight on a certain date? It’s gonna be tough. They have their job to do, but we have our job to do as well,” Coker said.
During the first few weeks of the month, the CSAC, or the California State Athletic Commission, has passed a new set of policies including emergency rules about extreme weight cutting in the MMA sport. The CSAC has recently banned IV rehydration, they extended the potential time between weight-ins and the scheduled bouts. They even imposed a stricter monitoring of dehydration which will be facilitated by the doctors on the fight day itself.
The last policy looks like what Coker is concerned the most. The Bellator president, who actually lives in San Jose, California and who often holds a good number of shows in the state, expressed his concerned about being put in a difficult position if in case a doctor decides to pull out the lined up MMA fighters at the 11th hour.
“I’m perfectly fine with what [CSAC executive officer Andy Foster is] implementing and I hope it’s something that can evolve. But as a promoter, if fighter X shows up, fighter Z shows up, we have national TV there — and then, oh, the fight is off? You’re .002 over [on the test] and the doctor says you can’t fight? It could be really problematic for us. I’m gonna talk to Andy about it. I’m sure it’ll all work out. It doesn’t mean we’ll stop promoting there, it’s just that we might not bring title fights or fights that you’re worried about somebody making weight,” Coker said.
CSAC chairman John Carvelli made it clear that the commission is not aiming for the demolition of the MMA sport. In fact, he said that the word ‘severe’ simply means that the doctor monitoring the fighters would determine who is and who is not fit to be in a bout. Furthermore, the CSAC will also be implementing specific gravity hydration exams on the fight day itself.
“For heaven’s sake, I hope that if a trained ringside physician sees signs of severe dehydration in one of these athletes that they will do something about it. That’s why they’re there. … I think these are simple things we’re doing that everyone hopefully can get on board with to avoid something dreadful happening to one of these great athletes, one of their athletes that they’re promoting and working with,” Carvelli clarified.