While Yamma pitfighting released a press release last week ‘revealing’ the Yamma pit, words didn’t really explain it all that well:
The Yamma is a circular pit, shaped almost like a bowl, with a circular flat bottom that rises up around the edge. In this ring, if a fighter is pushed backwards towards the fence, he moves up the lip, gaining both a height and leverage advantage over his opponent. From this position, the fighter on the lip can use gravity and leverage to reverse his opponent, and take the fight back into the center without a break in the action.
“There has been a lot of speculation about the Yamma; some people thought it would have a moving floor, spikes or even live alligators,” said Bob Meyrowitz, Rope Partners. “But the Yamma isn’t about flashy gimmicks; it’s about the evolution of a sport and how the traditional ring can be altered to accelerate that evolution. At its core, the purpose of the Yamma is to make MMA fighting more exciting for those who matter most – the fans.”
Considering alligators were considered for the original UFC cage, it’s not surprising that people were kinda hoping for something just as retarded. As it stands, the whole thing is a bit of a letdown … the shape of the ring is pretty much identical to Chuck Norris’ World Combat League, but with a cage popped on top. Considering how the YAMMA was being heralded as the be-all end-all of MMA fighting surfaces, I can’t help but feeling let down.
On the other hand, I’m still interested to see how the raised edges will affect the fight. In the standard cage, fighters try to stay in the middle and push their opponents into corners. Now it’s the fighter closest to the cage who may have the advantage since the lip could help them get up from any takedown. It’d be nice to imagine the Yamma guys did some test runs to see if it actually did make a big difference, but I kinda doubt it. I guess we’ll see on Friday if the whole thing was any more than just a marketing ploy.
(thanks to Bloody Elbow for the images)