It seems that WITHIN the current paradigm of judging - GSP and Jones both won, So I will talk about the judging system as a whole.
Joe Rogan has an interesting point in his latest podcast with Jeremy Stephens & Eddie Bravo - the 10-9/10-8 system is ridicilous. For e.g: the judges gave GSP the 1st round 10-9 and gave Hendricks the second round 10-9. This is clearly unfair since the ‘advantage’ for GSP in round 1 was tiny wheres in R2 JH dropped him and hit him significantly. This scoring system is just weird. To get a 10-8 round you have to literally nearly finish the fight. I would like to see plenty of 10-5, 10-7, 10-2 rounds. Why not? If I hit you 10 times, you hit me 1 time (all other factors excluded) why should it be a 10-9 round??
Second point is judging points based on ‘damage’. I personally agree that this should be a major, if not the defining criteria. I view it like a street fighter game - every fighter has a certain amount of ‘Health’ and every time he gets hit it goes down - question is by how much. It is evident that 10 of GSP’s jabs are less or equally effective as a single punch from JH’s left. Question is - how are judges expected to judge that? By the look of the fighter? A fighter can be destroying the other guy, eat an elbow, get a cut and look like terminator.
What about body shots? Leg kicks? How about certain fighters bruising quicker than others. As much as this SHOULD be a defining point, its inhuman for judges to be able to score that accurately.
Thirdly, there is this weird thing about wrestling. Why are take-downs scored so heavily? There are thousands of instances where the fighter who gets taken down actually ends up doing more damage from the bottom or even landing/attempting a submission. So how is a take-down in off itself so heavily weighed.
Fourthly, why is the judging criteria not made more transparent? Why is it not systemized? There should be a clear set of criteria as to what can win you fights. They should be printing on a massive canvas and hung in every MMA gym.
Fifthly, EVEN if the judging criteria was transparent and clear, you need knowledgable people to be able to assess the fight through that framework. Every judge must be selected based on EXTENSIVE martial arts experience.
Finally, it is naive to think that nothing happens under the table. This does not always mean that ‘DANA WHITE’ fixed a fight. Private people placing large bets can bribe judges, referees and even the fighters themselves. There are plently of ways to manipulate events, not just a ‘conspiracy theory’ of DW being a villain (not saying he isn’t). EVERY sport in the world at one point had instances of match fixing, why should MMA be an exception? The money behind the scenes is WAY bigger than anything the fighters or even the UFC makes. How about having a panel of 20 judges and randomly selecting them 2 days before the fight?