Sunday, December 30, 2007

UFC 79: An Exhibition of What I Respect and Despise About the Sport

Last night I watched my first UFC event. What intrigued me most about it is the fact that it really was a tale of two cities so to speak. The best and worst that the sport has to offer.

The grudge match between Rich Clementi and Melvin Guillard thoroughly disgusted me. Not the fight itself, but the attitudes of the fighters. Guillard led the stupidity by walking to the ring wearing a mask in imitation of the Predator. Yes, the one from the movie. He even had the music from the movie playing. What was he thinking?!? Then when Clementi won the fight he told his opponent to "suck on it" complete with gestures. They had to hold Guillard back from attacking him. It's antics like that that denigrate MMA as a sport to the general public.

Fortunately, the event was redeemed by most of the other fighters, particularly the ones from the title fight, George St. Pierre and Matt Hughes. The title fight itself was a pretty amazing display of skill. I was amazed at the range of skills that GSP can use effectively in the ring. The neck throw from his offside was just awesome, not to mention the arm bar he used to submit Hughes.

All that being said, what impressed me most was their sportsmanship. They both hugged after the fight, clearly respectful of each others' abilities. GSP even whispered something to Hughes on camera. Something that made him laugh in appreciation. I would absolutely love to have been a fly on the mat to hear that remark.

Anyway, overall I enjoyed the show. Though I still think Dana White needs to get with the times and add at least one woman fight to the card.


Glenn said...

Sensei, I believe it was Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou from Cameroon who had the predator mask on not melvin.
Kind of funny actually he did not need the dread locks from the mask as he had a decent set of his own.
This is the last time we will see Melvin in the UFC as his attitude has gotten him in some deep water with Dana White over the last two fights.

Lori O'Connell said...

Oh, oops. Thanks for the correction. There were so many fights I must have gotten confused. Either way it was pretty cheesy!