Cut off from the rest of the MMA watching world up here in Canada, I went to bed last night not knowing that a backlash was brewing against Wednesday’s violent Fight for the Troops event. Lots of people thought the event was too violent: the brutal knockout of Yoshida, Al-Hassan’s arm getting snapped, and Ben Saunders destroying a dude via muay thai. You could also say that Mike Swick’s win over Jonathan Goulet was somewhat hardcore as well. But the cherry on top of this violence sundae wasn’t seen on the broadcast but can be seen for free right now on UFC.com: Corey Hill breaking his leg in half while kicking his opponent.
Midsy said the event was ‘marred’ by these endings. Zach Arnold was annoyed by the fact that injured fighters were carted off the screen, never to be mentioned again. No health updates, no cooing assurances that everything was gonna be all right from the broadcast team. Maggie Hendricks didn’t like the fact that Steve Cantwell bragged about snapping Razak Al-Hassan’s arm.
My opinion, such as it is, is that this sort of shit happens all the time. These guys are out there fighting with bad intentions and when someone gets knocked out or injured, well that’s a part of the job description. Not every fight can end with both guys standing, and to get all wound up because you got too much of a glimpse of the brutality that lives under the surface of the sport is kinda silly. Either you acknowledge what MMA really is and accept the fact that it’s fucking violent and people WILL get hurt, or you’re just sticking your head in the sand and pretending that MMA is something it isn’t.
Other sports have fairweather fans who come and go depending on how well their team is doing. MMA seems to have people who like to cherry pick what they see as ‘real MMA’. Guys like GSP and Randy Couture and so on and so forth. Then when something like a dude’s leg exploding or an arm popping out of joint happens or a guy celebrates the ass whupping he just unleashed, you say “This isn’t what I signed up for.”
Yes, it is. MMA is a violent sport and people get hurt all the time. Now of course we shouldn’t be callous assholes about it, but let’s try not to be giant pussies either, okay?