UFC Fight in May
This is a slight departure in my blogging, but it has just been announced that the current Ultimate Fighting welterweight Champion, Matt Hughes, will be fighting the original champ, Royce Gracie in May. I'm quite excited about this prospect as I have not seen Gracie fight in a long time and Hughes is an amazing mixed martial artist.
For anyone who has followed the evolution of no-holds barred (NHB) fighting, the Gracie name is synonymous with the Octagon. Up to about UFC seven or eight, the fights were all pretty good with quality athletes like Ken Shamrock, Patrick Smith, Gerard Gordeau among many others. Then the organizers seemed to start just wanting bloody messes so they put big guys against little guys in "David and Goliath" type events and it sucked. I remember one particular fight with Arn Anderson against some big guy whose "fighting style" was "SAFTA" or Scientific Aggressive Fighting Techniques of America", or something stupid like that. I tuned out for a while.
Then I noticed that new management took over and introduced weight classes and some new, "user friendly" rules. I started to watch again and was not disappointed. New stars were reigning in their divisions, winning with techniques rather than sloppy smashing. There was much less bragging and trash-talking (I couldn't stand David "Tank" Abbott and enjoyed seeing him get his ass kicked by anyone with actual fighting talent) and the promoter put together tight events.
Now that NHB is mainstream with several organizations - King of the Cage, The UFC, Pancrase, and in a different way, K-1 - it is easier to watch and get my fill. When Spike TV started up I thought it would be a quick flame, burning brightly and then going away, much like Chappelle's Show. Now that it has been around and has picked up the UFC package, I'm a very happy man. Just wanted to share that and urge people who like boxing to give NHB a chance if you haven't already.
And now, back to our regularly scheduled skeptical anti-religious ranting and bitching...