Fucking January. Every goddamn year, half the writers in the universe feel it’s important that they write lists detailing all the shit they thought was best and what they think should happen.
If Kevin Iole’s “My presumptuous opinion on what other people’s New Years resolutions should be” article wasn’t enough to make you shoot yourself in the fucking head, you’re gonna really love this turd by Ryan Hockensmith from ESPN entitled “Eight things to expect in ’08“. As with Steve Seivert’s less moronic list, I’m gonna break it down point by point:
1. Randy’s Return to the UFC
Sure, we all pray for this at the dinner table before eating, but there’s about as much chance of this happening as there’s a chance Dana White is going to announce he’s gay and engage in a sizzling threeway with Matt Lindland and Frank Shamrock.
Anyone who knows anything about the situation knows that Randy Couture would rather commit sepuku than bend over and take it from the UFC. And make no doubt about it, the UFC is currently setting shit up in courts so it’ll be a bend over affair. Long story short: No way in hell.
2. A year of mega-fights
Ryan tries to sell Dan Henderson vs Anderson Silva, Quinton Jackson vs Forrest Griffin, and GSP vs Matt Serra as mega-fights. Too bad most fans are too uneducated to care about Dan Henderson and GSP / Serra barely deserves to be a footnote when talking about mega fights. Griffin / Jackson is a good match that should be elevated to mega status by TUF, but give me a season’s worth of TV time and I’ll make people think Jake O’Brien vs Eddie Sanches is fight of the century.
To me, a mega fight is a match that people will remember for a long time. Tito / Chuck and Chuck / Randy and Chuck / Rampage and Wand / Chuck are mega fights. I’m sure there’s some mega fights that could happen that don’t involve Chuck Liddell … but the truth of the matter is that mega fights need mega stars, and the UFC just lost Rich Franklin and Matt Hughes. 2008 will be a building year as the next generation grows into the role required to really sell fights.
3. A boxer will try MMA
Well duh. So long as MMA offers a decent paycheck that doesn’t come with brain-damage attached, you’re gonna see washed up boxers step into the ring.
4. Here come the lightweights
Mark this as the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard someone say: “The 2007 year was not a great one for UFC’s 155-pounders and many of the division’s top stars still aren’t in the organization.” Well jeez. Here I was thinking that 2007 was THE YEAR of the lightweights. Besides Sherk holding shit up, the lightweight division couldn’t have had a better year. I’d venture to say off the top of my head that two or three of the best five fights of the year were lightweight bouts.
5. More fighters will flunk steroid tests
Yeah, they might in the minors, but I actually expect positives to go down for UFC events. Why? Because the more you educate the fighters on the subject, the easier it will be for them to cheat without getting caught.
6. St. Pierre and Silva become the consensus Top 2 pound-for-pounders
Hey, I can’t argue this. Jake already thinks Silva is number one and I only disagree because I think GSP deserves the spot.
7. A crazy “TUF” year
Ryan buys the idea that the UFC is completely changing up the format of TUF. While I expect some tweaks, I bet for the most part it’ll be same old, same old. I’d actually be a bit more confident that changes were being made if they didn’t have two interesting coaches to fall back on. But I bet Dana and the producers are like “Quinton + Forrest = Gold!”, and they don’t bother to do much else.
8. A new era of fighters
It’s nice that Ryan thinks UFC fighters are underpaid and need to make more. But I’ll bet 2009 will still see a lot of fighters on the undercard making less than 10k per fight.