14B NCAC 10 .0809          Fouls-MIXED MARTIAL ARTS

(a)  Procedures to determine fouls in a mixed martial arts contest:

(1)           The referee shall issue a warning after the initial foul. After the initial warning a penalty shall be issued as a result of second foul. The penalty may be a deduction of points or disqualification depending on the severity of the foul. Any points deducted for any foul must be deducted in the round which the foul occurred.

(2)           The referee as soon as practical after a foul, shall call time and notify which contestant is being penalized and the total points the contestant is being penalized.

(3)           If a bottom contestant commits a foul and in the referee's judgment is not in control, unless the top contestant is injured, the bout shall continue, so as not to jeopardize the top contestant's superior positioning at the time.

(4)           Only the referee can assess a foul and any point deductions. Judges may not deduct points for what they interpret is a foul.

(5)           The referee shall check the fouled contestant's condition to see if he or she can still participate in the contest.

(6)           Disqualification occurs after any combination of three fouls or if the referee determines the foul to be flagrant.

(b)  Intentional foul:

(1)           If an intentional foul causes an injury and the bout is allowed to continue a mandatory two point penalty shall be assessed to the contestant committing the foul.

(2)           If an injury sustained by a contestant as a result of the intentional foul causes the contestant to be unable to continue at a subsequent point, the injured contestant shall win by a technical decision, if he or she is ahead on the score cards. If the injured contestant is even or behind on the score cards at the time of the stoppage, the bout shall be declared a technical draw.

(c)  Unintentional foul:

(1)           If a bout is stopped because of an unintentional foul, the referee shall determine whether the contestant who has been fouled can continue or not. If the contestant's chance of winning has not been seriously jeopardized as a result of the foul and if the foul did not involve concussive impact to the head of the contestant who has been fouled, the referee may order the bout continued after a recuperative interval of not more than five minutes. Immediately after stopping the bout or at the end of the round the referee must immediately inform the inspector or Division representative of his determination that the foul was accidental and unintentional.

(2)           If the referee determines either from his observation or that of the ringside physician that the bout may not continue because of the injury from the unintentional foul the bout shall be declared a no contest if the foul occurred:

(A)          During the first two rounds of a non-championship bout, or

(B)          During the first three round of a championship bout.

(3)           If the unintentional foul renders the contestant unable to continue the bout, the outcome shall be determined by scoring the completed rounds and the round which the referee last stopped the bout. The second round must be completed in a non championship bout or the third round must be completed in a championship bout.

(4)           If an injury from an intentional foul later becomes aggravated by fair blows and the referee orders the bout stopped because of the injury, the outcome must be determined by scoring the completed rounds and the round which the referee stops the contest.

(5)           A contestant may not be declared the winner of a bout on the basis of his or her claim that the opponent fouled him or her unintentionally by hitting him or her in the groin. If after a recuperative interval of not more than five minutes, a contestant is unwilling to continue because of the claim of being hit in the groin, the bout shall be declared a no contest if the second round has not been completed in a three round bout or the third round has not been completed in a five round bout.

(d)  The following are types of fouls in a mixed martial arts contest:

(1)           Butting with the head.

(2)           Eye gouging of any kind.

(3)           Biting.

(4)           Hair pulling.

(5)           Fishhooking.

(6)           Groin attacks of any kind.

(7)           Putting a finger into any orifice or into any cut or laceration on an opponent.

(8)           Small joint/single digit manipulation, finger and toe locks.

(9)           Striking to the spine or back of head.

(10)         Striking downward using the point of the elbow. (Arcing elbow strikes are permitted).

(11)         Throat strikes of any kind, including grabbing the trachea.

(12)         One or two handed chokes applied directly to the trachea or windpipe.

(13)         Knuckle gouging to the face or any part of the body including into the throat.

(14)         Clawing, twisting or pinching the flesh.

(15)         Grabbing the clavicle.

(16)         Kicking the head of a grounded opponent.

(17)         Kicking the front of the opponents knee.

(18)         Kneeing the head of a grounded opponent.

(19)         Spiking an opponent to the canvas on his head or neck.

(20)         Stomping on a grounded opponent. A contestant is considered grounded when his or her torso or three points of his or her body is touching the canvas.(example: two legs and a hand are touching canvas.) This definition applies to Subparagraphs (d)(16), (d)(18), and (d)(20) of this Rule. A downed opponent may kick up to all legal striking points of the body.

(21)         Kicking to the kidney with the heel.

(22)         Throwing, lifting, pushing, or otherwise forcing an opponent out of the ring area or fence area.

(23)         Holding the shorts or glove of an opponent.

(24)         Spitting on an opponent.

(25)         Engaging in any unsportsmanlike conduct that causes an injury to an opponent.

(26)         Holding the ropes or cage.

(27)         Using abusive language or illicit gestures in the cage or ring area.

(28)         Attacking an opponent on or during the break.

(29)         Attacking an opponent who is under the care of the referee, medical personnel or other ring officials.

(30)         Attacking an opponent after the bell has sounded to end the round.

(31)         Flagrantly disregarding the instructions of the referee.

(32)         Timidity, including avoiding contact with an opponent, intentionally or consistently dropping the mouthpiece, delaying the contest due to improper equipment, or faking an injury.

(33)         Interference from anyone working the corner or cornermen leaving their area.

(34)         Throwing in the towel during competition.

(35)         Any act in the judgment of the referee that is detrimental and places an opponent at a disadvantage.

(36)         Rope or cage grabbing to avoid a submission hold, or continually holding the rope to rest or pull self from action, or gain advantage.

(e)  Fighters may not grab the ring ropes or cage at any time the two fighters are in contract with each other during the match in an attempt to stall action, trap his opponent, escape a technique, or otherwise gain advantage in the match.

(f)  Fighters may momentarily grab the ring ropes or cage to steady themselves or to gain/maintain their balance.

(g)  If a fighter grabs or otherwise secures any ring rope with a hand, arm foot or leg during the match to avoid a submission hold, the referee shall stop the match and deduct a point from the fighter who so grabbed the rope.

(h)  If a fighter continually holds the ring ropes to rest or pull himself from the action, avoid the bout's action, or otherwise gain advantage in the match, the referee shall deduct one point from the resting fighter the first time and two points each additional time.

(i)  Excessive grabbing or other use of the ring ropes in violation of the Rules in this Chapter may result, in the referee's discretion, in a fighter's disqualification and an award of the bout to the fighter's opponent.

(j)  The referee shall verbally instruct fighters to release the ring ropes or cage prior to warning, deducting points, or disqualifying a fighter for violating the Rules in this Chapter.


History Note:        Authority G.S. 143-652.1;

Eff. March 1, 2008;

Transferred from 14A NCAC 12 .0809 Eff. June 1, 2013;

Pursuant to G.S. 150B-21.3A, rule is necessary without substantive public interest Eff. January 9, 2018.