The longstanding debate of whether or not MMA could reach the same level as boxing, or even surpass it, is becoming a little clearer these days. Through the genius marketing of Dana White and the UFC, we're seeing a shift in power as once misunderstood combat "cage fighting" is now being recognized as a skilled sport. Boxing, on the other hand, has never seemed so obsolete.
The sudden rise in popularity isn't just any coincidence, either. Capitalizing on giving the fans exactly what they want, companies like the UFC consistently provide some of the best competition and entertainment you're able to find anywhere in sports.
This sudden switch in command isn't just credited to a lack of talent or to the bouts themselves, either. The culture of boxing has diminished over the years, as the sport has evolved into too much nonsense and too little fighting. It's become a circus act at this point, as the sweet science is often overlooked by crazy antics and racist banter.
Fighting is the art of picking your opponent apart, breaking him or her down. When you neglect the rest of the body, you're just not getting the full effect. It's like playing basketball with no three-pointers -- sure, but why? It's sad to say, but it may just be over for the old man's sport. Here are the 10 reasons MMA has already surpassed boxing:
It's not one-dimensional.
Boxing is an extremely technical sport and does require a lot of attention to detail, but like I said, when you neglect to use your entire body as a tool for the purpose of fighting, you're essentially making yourself useless. Observing the contrasting styles in mixed martial arts is what awards the sport so much depth; no two fighters use the same techniques. Without the variation in fighting style, we'd be seeing all the same bullsh*t: punching and ducking.
Good fights are televised for free.
Through FOX, Spike TV and "The Ultimate Fighter" reality series, it's easy watch live UFC action on television these days. High access not only makes it convenient, but also, such exposure proves how badass the sport is. While each main card is available on PPV, there's more than enough good action to enjoy on TV at all times. In just 10 years, we've seen an underground sport go mainstream. You can thank Dana White for that.
You never know what's going to happen.
The beauty of MMA truly lies in its unpredictability. You never know what's going to happen in that Octagon until the bell rings and the different fighting styles clash. An amateur match could be just as a exciting as a professional match, as most of these younger guys come out swinging like bats out of hell. Any fight that ends with a helicopter kick in under 30 seconds is a good fight to me.
You actually get to watch the fights you want to see.
Instead of having athletes pussyfoot around each other and talk senseless sh*t on their HBO series, the UFC and most other MMA organizations see to it that they give fans the fights they want to see, before it's too late. Sure, we still haven't seen GSP versus Anderson Silva, but the fact that Mayweather hasn't fought Pacquiao is a true injustice to sports fans everywhere. I mean, come on, even Brock Lesnar stepped into the Octagon!
MMA fighters have a better chance of breaking through.
One of the biggest problems in boxing is that the younger guys are overlooked. Unless you have a monster cosign from another boxer or celebrity, it can be hard to break through on the scene. However, because of the roots of organizations like the UFC, it's easier than ever for talent to rise to the top. The amount of champions and contenders to come out of the "TUF" reality series is really impressive, as Dana White has given pretty much every competitor an equal opportunity to break in.
Boxing is more of a risk for serious injury.
As crazy as it sounds, MMA is actually far less of a risk than boxing is to the brain. Due to the focus of delivering blows to the head, boxing leaves much greater, serious lasting effects, which can be more destructive than just a broken collarbone or bad cauliflower ear. In MMA, there's more focus on making your opponent tap out, or beating him or her into submission, rather than just repeatedly pounding on his or her skull.
Just look at Muhammad Ali. He was the greatest of all time, but now, he can barely even say his own name. The jury's still out for some of the long-term effects for MMA fighters, but until then, it's the safer bet.
MMA has robbed boxing of all the good talent.
Because the UFC is now the trendy sports organization to join, it's hard to convince the younger kids to get involved with boxing. That means there's more talent in MMA and less star power for their rivals. Fighters are looking to prove themselves on the top-level and mixed martial arts is just that.
That's not to say there isn't promising young talent in boxing, but we're definitely seeing more if it elsewhere. Imagine if Jon Jones only focused on boxing? He'd easily be one of the best in the world. Instead, he chose to become more of a well-rounded fighter that can dominate both standing up and on the ground.
There is no real competition for Floyd Mayweather.
Imagine Magic with no Larry, or Deion with no Barry? There's no real competition for Floyd Mayweather and that's why boxing is suffering. Sure, a few years ago Manny Pacquiao would be his biggest competition for supremacy, but when big egos and useless trash talking got in the way, it just never materialized.
As great of an athlete as Mayweather is, there is no reason why he should still be undefeated. That's not greatness. That's just a lack of competition and maintaining a title. Still, I don't think Mayweather gives a f*ck. He's making his money and that's all he cares about. The man's a hustler at the end of the day.
There are true knockouts in MMA.
There's nothing worse than watching a 15-round match where absolutely nothing happens... and then, a judge's decision. As barbaric as it sounds, every fight should end with a knockout and only one man walking away. I mean, what else do we watch the fights for? It's for the same exact reason we watch NASCAR -- for the fiery crashes. It's hard to watch, but how could you look away?
Women can fight in the UFC!
This is what truly puts boxing in the dirt. While female boxers are out there, they haven't been put out on the main stage quite like the UFC has showcased its female fighters. So far, the results have been amazing. Women like Ronda Rousey bring a whole new attitude to the sport and offer something no one's ever seen. This addition only gives the UFC even more room for growth, as combining genders is the next step to evolving the sport and attaining even more global recognition. Next step: the Olympics.
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