Following a vote by the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) in Vegas at the commission’s monthly meeting, the UFC president’s Power Slap League (PSL) was approved after a proposal and presentation by UFC chief business officer Hunter Campbell, according to MMA Junkie. Campbell, who is part of the PSL’s ownership group along with White and others, spoke for fewer than 15 minutes before it was agreed upon that the new league would be regulated and overseen by the NSAC.
According to Campbell, getting the PSL approved was almost a matter of public safety. “Really the appeal to the commission is to say we believe the athletic commission has the jurisdiction to regulate the sport,” he told MMA Junkie. “Our concern is they choose not to do it. As this grows, you’re going to see, I call it, ‘the sports bar slap contest,’ where you have two 56-year-old guys dropped at a bar, and they’re going to be slapping each other for $200 in prize money. Ultimately nothing will be done to prevent that. That’s sort of the appeal to the commission.”
As of now, the plan is to start holding the UFC head’s Power Slap League events behind closed doors at the UFC Apex by the end of 2022 and getting them on the air via “a major network partner” before eventually opening the competitions up to the paying public.
White has long been intrigued with slap fighting, a somewhat disturbing but also fascinating contest that features two competitors facing one another throwing slaps with open hands to each other’s faces, and now that interest has morphed into an actual league that will feature weight classes, brain scans, blood tests and safety requirements like mouthguards and earplugs. Matches will be scored using the 10-point must system used in boxing and MMA by commission judges, Campbell told ESPN.
“After testing it, it became clear to us that there’s massive potential here as a sport, not unlike the early years of the UFC,” Campbell said. “It made all the sense in the world to go toward regulation before the sport’s commencing, for all the obvious reasons — No. 1, the health and safety of the competitors.”
In a video posted to his Instagram page looking for potential slappers, White confirmed that the gloves have officially come off and that the new league is on.