I sit next to a Russian born guy named David Komeroff, in my Information Systems class. He says he fights MMA. I believe him, mostly because he looks ugly as hell. He also drinks a half a gallon of water each class and rocks a sweet mohawk. I have tried to talk with him about the sport, but it always ends in silence. He knows I’m a poser who enjoys movies like Warrior, that I only know one submission’s name (rear naked choke…sounds so tuff), and couldn’t bust a grape. I struggle with things to say. He is super ugly though…. mean ugly. Like angry dog ugly. He doesn’t appreciate all the hype that the sport is getting now. I think he has to act like that though, makes him look like an artist. Artists always hate their own work.
I’ve tried to fight giving into UFC, sticking to my roots in boxing. I came from a family where boxing was part of my fathers upbringing. My grandad boxed. He taught his two boys to box. Once, my Uncle beat the skin off a man’s forehead in a sparing session. I boxed a few times, like a animal, when we laced up at the house. Even my high school had a big fight night, where kids would just sling their arms at each other for a fundraiser.
Grandpa would PPV the fights. I remember watching Holyfield, De La Hoya, Mosely, Tyson, and Jones Jr. I was taught that boxing was strategy, pure, based on scoring rather than brutality. A fighters mind was better than his fists. However, for a long time now in the US, there has been a cultural shift away from boxing. The pastime paradigm is losing its edge, and Dana White is more than ready to take over.
The main argument against UFC/MMA is that it is too brutal. You can use your elbows for heavens sake! As I have watched, as limited is my experience and expertise, it seems to me that the fighters in UFC take less of a beating than boxers. Most MMA fights usually have three, five minute rounds, and unlike boxing, you can submit your opponent. In boxing a fight usually has 12 rounds of three minutes, maybe more. Imagine getting jabbed in the face for just 15 minutes in MMA, as opposed to 36 minutes in boxing. UFC was designed for quick, punishing matches. Boxing was designed for a drawn out war, ending in a decision or TKO (Cuts). Most boxing matches don’t end in KO’s.
Part of the lack of media coverage boxing has been dealt is due in part to the lack of talent in the ring. Both sports rely heavily on the quality of the fight. There are so many great fighters in MMA mix right now, while boxing has a few in number, and only one that is marketable to the US. The UFC has plenty of big names and exciting prospects for the future: GSP, Jon Jones, Anderson Silva, and Cain Velasquez. Youtube those names.
As a boxing fan I can only hope for Manny and Floyd to fight for the rebirth of boxing here in America. For now, I’ll be forced to go to Hooters, watch the UFC, and order awful wings. Food and Service: D.