Just what the world of MMA needs, a sanctioning body.
It's what all us MMA fans have been clamoring for right?
Don't go mocking out of reflex, friends.
The people behind the World Alliance for Mixed Martial Arts are painstakingly crafting a single sanctioning body that will rank MMA fighters, establish a set of rules, and sanction world championship bouts.
Dave Szady is the CEO of the for-profit organization and the former FBI assistant director for counter-intelligence. That's not a title you can gloss over, and dismiss with a derisive snort, can you? "We're trying to help take the sport mainstream," he says.
So far, the UFC hasn't embraced the WAMMA, or even consented to give 'em a little cheek peck. But don't be so certain that will never come to pass.
Some true heavyweights are involved in this endeavor, some of them names you know (Pat Miletich, Goldberg) and others you don't (attorneys Fred Levin and Michael Lynch). It's not inconceivable that the political pull these guys have could help get MMA get sanctioned in some holdout states.
Here are the first rankings from the sanctioning body, the WORLD ALLIANCE FOR MIXED MARTIAL ARTS, and here is the organization's mission statement.
"WAMMA is dedicated to promoting and serving the sport of Mixed Martial Arts with its monthly independent and objective rankings of fighters, regardless of promotional affiliation."
1. Fedor Emelianenko; 2. Randy Couture; 3. Antonio Rodrigo Noguiera; 4. Tim Sylvia; 5. Josh Barnett; 6. Gabriel Gonzaga; 7. Andrei Arlovski; 8. Cheick Kongo; 9. (tie) Fabricio Werdum; 9. (tie) Ben Rothwell; 9. (tie) Aleksander Emelianenko. Also receiving votes: Mirko Cro Cop.
1. Quinton Jackson; 2. Mauricio Rua; 2. Forrest Griffin; 2. Wanderlei Silva; 5. Keith Jardine; 6. Chuck Liddell; 7. Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou; 8. (tie) Ryoto Machidia; 8. (tie) Dan Henderson; 10. Ricardo Arona. Also receiving votes: Rashad Evans, Tito Ortiz, Antonio Rogerio Noguiera, Thiago Silva.
1. Anderson Silva; 2. Paulo Filho; 3. Matt Lindland; 4. Dan Henderson; 5. Robbie Lawler; 6. Rich Franklin; 7. Denis Kang; 8. Yushin Okami; 9. Yoshihiro Akiyama; 10. Nathan Marquardt. Also receiving votes: Frank Trigg, Jason Miller; Martin Kampmann, Kazuo Misaki.
1. Georges St. Pierre; 2. Matt Hughes; 3. Matt Serra; 4. Jon Fitch; 5. Josh Koscheck; 6. Jake Shields; 7. Karo Parisyan; 8. Carlos Condit; 9. Diego Sanchez; 10. Marcus Davis. Also receiving votes: Nick Thompson, Thiago Alves, Akira Kikuchi, Drew Fickett.
1. Gilbert Melendez; 2. Takanori Gomi; 3. Gesias Calvancanti; 4. B.J. Penn; 5. Sean Sherk; 6. Joe Stevenson; 7. Hayato Sakurai; 8. Shinya Aoki; 9. Vitor Ribeiro; 10. Tatsuya Kawajiri. Also receiving votes: Roger Huerta, Kid Yamamoto, Urijah Faber, Kenny Florian, Marcus Aurelio, Koutetsu Boku, Yves Edwards.