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ZOMG Brock will kill UFC!

Luke from Bloody Elbow has the interesting opinion that Brock Lesnar could be the worst thing to happen to MMA since it was pulled off PPV in the 90’s.

For MMA as a sport to be taken seriously by the general public, it needs the general public to think the best fighters in the sport are legitimate athletes. If someone like Lesnar can make a transition from pro wrestling to MMA stardom, it will be hard for the sport to be taken any more seriously than wrestling is. I realize that Lesnar has credentials as a real athlete in collegiate wrestling, I’m glad White got Lesnar to sign up with UFC, and I’m curious to see how Lesnar does. But I’m concerned that if Lesnar succeeds, he’ll be doing it at the expense of the sport of mixed martial arts.

I don’t think anyone is going to question Lesnar’s qualifications as a ‘real athlete’. He’s got an alphabet soup’s worth of amateur wrestling credentials, and nearly got into the NFL despite the fact that he barely had any real experience at all. Sure, he spent a few years growling and stomping around a ring like a retard for the WWE, and for that we shall mock him forever. But it doesn’t take away the fact that we recognize his (possibly) natural physical abilities.

Luke seems to be trying to push the idea that anyone making it to the top in this sport without years and years of training is going to wreck MMA’s reputation as a sport requiring skill and dedication. To me, I’ve always found that idea stupid … the appeal of MMA to me is that it’s a sport anyone can go into.

You don’t have to be wrestling since you were 10 to compete in MMA. You don’t have to be raised by the Gracies. There are tons of fighters out there who exploded out of nowhere with nothing more than a few instructional dvds and the warrior spirit to stand against someone with way more experience and think “I can still beat this guy.”

Honestly, anyone who can’t see the skill involved in MMA isn’t the kind of person who’ll ever become a fan of the sport. And those of us who do know what’s up understand that training, experience, and hard work are just equalizers that help smaller opponents face guys like Brock Lesnar and still have a chance to win.

  • Gavin says:

    That’s exactly why MMA is so popular; the idea that anyone could jump in the ring and stand with one of those guys. Why do we all love B.J. Penn? The dude was the best grappler in the world with three year’s training.

  • Accomando says:

    Good comedy from the link trail.

    “…Rock out with your Brock out
    on 18 Aug 2007 at 10:48 am6

    It’s hard to imagine somebody beating this guy in a fight. You’d seriously have to shoot him in the heart with an elephant gun to stop him…”

  • Exactly! The reason MMA is so appealing is because of its everyman aesthetic. Many if not most of the guys and some gals who are in the stands have either grappled or participated in MMA training either that day or earlier in the week.It’s a different kind of armchair quarterbacking.
    Everyone who fights has to respect the other guy, regardless of skill level, even if he hates the ground they walk on. If they don’t it could be “lights out!”
    That’s what I love about it…. (even though I hate to see a skilled guy lose to a scrub.) it keeps everyone honest.

    Besides, Mir is going to win unless Brock gets lucky…

  • Mobb Deep says:

    Luke shouldn’t worry, I don’t see Lesnar doing anything notable in MMA. Probably could beat McCully or some other forgettable HW, but won’t get past Mir or even Heath Herring. Indeed, I think the UFC set him up for failure by matching him vs Mir, perhaps the 3rd most dangerous HW off his back after Fedor and Big Nog.

  • fightfan says:

    “It’s hard to imagine somebody beating this guy in a fight. You’d seriously have to shoot him in the heart with an elephant gun to stop him…”

    Absolutely hilarious. I can imagine beating him with a baseball bat just to have him laugh it off. Maybe a couple sticks of TNT would do the job. Unless he gets caught in a sub or hit square in the jaw, you are not going to hurt that mac truck of a human

  • fightfan says:

    Of course I think that Mir will win by submission. I am just saying that the dude is built like a house and would be hard to hurt him.

  • I actually think Brock will beat Mir. But past that i dunno who else he’s gonna be able to win against

  • Mobb Deep says:

    Excellent, now I’m definitely putting cash on Mir cause FL is always wrong about these things!

  • #1 jackal says:

    If I am correct, Quinton Jackson started wrestling when he was 17 yrs old, and has only been doing mma for like 7 years.
    Forrest Griffen never seen mma before untill he started some self defense classes as a police officer. So no, you dont have to do it your whole life to be successful.

    Mir will submit Lesnar

  • dignan says:

    Lesnar will be a force, equivalent with a better skilled(in wrestling anyways) Bob Sapp.

    Bob Sapp seemed practically unbeatable…that happens when you’re bigger than Shrek. However a skilled fighter can dismantle him relatively easily.

  • fightfan says:

    POST 10

    That is it. SHREK!!!! I have been wondering who the fuck Lesnar reminded me off!!! Wht a relief, that has been bothering me

  • Lifer says:

    props for the evan tanner shout-out that was hidden in there.

  • jjdnb says:

    Sakuraba is a legend of MMA and he was a pro wrestler in Japan. I dont think anyone will care as long as he is a good fighter.

  • Tisk, tisk.

    If MMA has the “everyman” appeal, let me be the first to tell those days are numbered. Georges St. Pierre, anyone?

    MMA still collects a lot of competitors who are not elite athletes and do not train extensively. At the lower levels, this is to be expected and partly embraced. At the highest levels, however, this is an indication MMA has not caught up with other sports in recruiting special athletes overall. Yes, there are obvious exceptions, but MMA – provided it continues to develop – will increasingly find less room for those without physical gifts.

    And I don’t know who said “BJ Penn only trained 3 years and won the world championships”, but that doesn’t matter. First of all, that’s sport jiu-jitsu, not MMA. If you think the guys who win those tournaments are your everyday athletes, think again. Second, BJ Penn is – quite literally – the exception to the rule. There are only 3 Americans to ever get their black belt in jiu-jitsu in less than 3 years – Penn, Mike Fowler, and Lloyd Irvin. I’ve trained with two of those three and let me ASSURE you they are not “everyman”. They are unbelievable competitors, athletes, and are gifted with a mind that is able to absorb the techniques and apply them effectively in record time.

    To be successful in MMA does not mean you must have GSP-like athleticism, but that some view it as a sport for “everyman” is only the product of sub-par athletes and tacticians maximizing their potential against less than sturdy opposition. It’s a living anachronism and it’s days are numbered.

  • Pardon – that should read “There are only 3 Americans to ever get their black belt in less than 4 YEARS”….not 3.

  • Accomando says:

    “…First of all, that’s sport jiu-jitsu, not MMA…”

    B.J. had very little MMA experience before he came into the UFC and got a title shot after only a couple of wins. The argument isn’t about athleticism, its about whether or not Lesnar’s limited MMA experience will tarnish MMA’s image if he succeeds.

    To point out that this happens in other sports; Antonio Gates didn’t play college football and he is one of the best tight-ends in the history of the NFL.

    If Lesnar had no credentials then maybe I would buy your argument, but Lesnar has legit amateur credentials in a martial art to go along with freakish athleticism, so it should not come as a huge shock if he is dominant and I don’t see it tarnishing MMA in the process.

  • “B.J. had very little MMA experience before he came into the UFC and got a title shot after only a couple of wins.”

    Precisely. He was facing what would now easily be described as sub-par opponents (even though he fought Din Thomas, Pulver, and Uno he did so at a time when they all had considerably fewer skills) and still couldn’t win the title even after 2 attempts.

    Then he decides to coast on what is ungodly talent AND LOSSES TWO STRAIGHT. To whom? To opponents like GSP who are more than just “guys who train in the gym.”

    I sort of liken this to the guy who says “I don’t really have a gameplan for this fight. I’m just going to go in there and do what I do.” This is – at the highest levels of any sport – downright moronic and it’s not how champions win. At the highest levels of any sport, there is a huge amount of highly specific, highly esoteric preparation including a highly specific gameplan. It’s the fighters who ignore this that wind up staying at the bottom.

    If you think that any guy who trains hard, loves Hulkamania and eat his vitamins/says his prayers can be a professional MMA fighter, you’re right: they can. They’ll just be a fighter who never beats anyone with anyone skill and never goes anywhere. But they can technically declare pro if they want.

    And, of course, Brock has legit wrestling credentials. He also has one MMA fight. ONE. Read that again: ONE. It is shameful that his UFC career is literally growing inside the Octagon. Kenny Florian has stated publicly that of all things he might do again, getting more experience before going to the big leagues would be the first order of business.

    Maybe Lesnar shows up and somehow undoes the laws of physics by taking us back in time when pure wrestlers with a little boxing and subs were hard to beat. Who knows? I certainly won’t be surprised if he beats Mir. But unless he is some sort of freak that doesn’t need to train hands for years to compete at the sport’s most unequivocally prestigious level, then our sport has some serious problems in the way talent is developed. You can see it in the free-for-all world that is amateur MMA and you can see it by the market-driven decisions of the UFC.

    Will Lesnar kill MMA if he beats Mir? No, I seriously doubt it. But would the UFC be signing him – and promoting him to main event status – strictly based off of his talent is the Lesnar name had no weight from professional wrestling? Please. He is being pushed this far for marketing purposes and because he is being given a very beatable opponent. It’s not because “everyman” – including those with impeccable wrestling credentials – can shadowbox for a couple of rounds and decide they can handle Fedor.

    All remember the lesson of Sylvester Terkay. His credentials were impeccable as was his touted athletic prowess and he turned out to be a gigantic bust. We’ll see about Mr. Lesnar.

  • Accomando says:

    Name all these well rounded physically gifted heavyweights out there?

    Seriously though, you may know of some up and comers, I don’t.

    Here is the skinny Luke, he was a big name, he has already fought in K-1, and he was talking a lot of shit. Dana always wants to try and make people eat their words, see Tito v. Chuck, Hughes v. Gracie, the attempts to get Kurt Angle and Mayweather. This was right up Dana’s alley and he couldn’t let the competition get this potential, and I mean potentia,l superstar. I recognise he only has 1 MMA fight against a can, but the possibilities were too great to pass up. Also, his name demands that he is a main event, he is too well known.

    I don’t see many more Brock Lesnars coming around, you can let this one exception slip, no?

  • Zheroen says:

    I think one aspect everyone is forgetting is that Brock has trained rather extensively in MMA for the past two or three years, first with the Miletich camp and more recently with Royce Gracie. Both camps raved about his natural ability (Miletich: “Matt Hughes at 265 pounds” It’s not like he’s just jumping in the deep end of the adult swim that is MMA after treading water above pro-wrestling’s kiddie pool – he’s actually made a genuine, concerted effort to become a legit MMA fighter.

    Yes, he only has one fight under his belt and it was difficult to determine how well he’ll adapt to the major leagues on account of that. And I agree that it’s somewhat ludicrous that a 1-0 fighter making his UFC debut is being pushed as a main eventer. However, he does bring the intangible known as star quality to the fold, and whether you give a shit about him being WWE World Champion or not, his NCAA Champion credentials are more impressive than those of many former amateur wrestlers who made the jump to MMA.

  • Xavier says:



    What a dumb article, Luke Thomas has too much time on his hands. Lesnar isn’t the first former pro-wrestler to go MMA, he won’t be the last. What he is though, is the first legitimate athlete who used to be a wrestler going to MMA. Plus, Mir is going to sub him out anyways, so the point is moot.

  • Well, considering the statement quoted by this blog’s author wasn’t even written by me – and is also clearly quoting another author in the post on my blog – I’m not so sure how culpable I am for the failings of the ideas underpinning the statement.

  • The sad price of reading everything through RSS feeds … no formatting. I’d fix it now but alas I am shitface drunk. If I haven’t fixed it by tommroow afternoon please remind me!

  • monkeypunch101 says:

    This article is exactly what I’ve been telling all of my friends and training partners down at Tribull. My coach agrees with me that Brock Lesnar could quite possibly be the worst thing to happen to MMA. If he wins, it’s going to be imposible to shut those WWE fuckheads up without choking them to death.

  • operator says:

    I really don’t give a rats ass if Brock does well or not. The bottom line if he does win the belt one day he will have to earn it and if he does that is good enough for me. Dana is a business man and it’s all about the Benjamins and Brock = $$$. If people stop watching UFC or mma because Brock is the champ then they are weak minded morons. I personally do not consider myself a moron so I will continue to watch along with a few million WWE fans.