Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Pitarresi: Ultimate Fighting is brutal


I used to be a boxing fan.


I go back to the days of Rockie Marciano, Sugar Ray Robinson, Emile Griffith, and Carmen Basilio. I watched dozens of fights, scores of them, with my grandfather when I was a little kid. My favorite boxer was Holley Mims, a journeyman welterweight who always was full of action for all six or eight rounds. I’ve covered a lot of boxing, too, and I maintain you haven’t lived until you’ve spent an evening right at the apron of the ring getting splattered by blood, sweat and snot. You want to get close to the action, that’s what you get.


I’m not much of a fight fan anymore, largely because I have seen the game at very, very close range in the ring and out, and, I think, also because so many fights are outright mismatches. I still admire the courage, skills, sacrifice, and preparation it takes to get in there, and I value physical and mental toughness, but, gosh, it is brutal.


Not as brutal, however, as Ultimate Fighting.


I nearly puked the other night watching Jon Jones sitting on top of Utica’s Matt Hamill and rocketing elbow after elbow into Matt’s face during their Ultimate Fighter 10 Finale showdown. I had to turn away a couple of times. No one ever should ever have to take that kind of beating. Hamill was totally helpless until Jones was given a warning for an illegal blow. You can throw elbows, believe it or not, but they have to be from 3 o’clock down, not from the top, or 12 o’clock. If it hadn’t been for the illegal blow, I guess the referee was going to allow Jones to continue until he was out of gas or Hamill was unconscious or dead.


Hamill won by disqualification, but who needs that kind of victory?


Matt Hamill is a tough kid, and he’s worked hard to make himself a national name, but look at the price he paid that night. Ridiculous.  


This was beyond brutal. It was nightmarish. Michael Vick and dog fighting? This was worse. I do not see the entertainment value. I wish it would go away.    


Blogger Jasper said...

Firstly, *sigh* it is not Ultimate Fighting, the sport is Mixed Martial Arts. The fight wasn't stopped because Hamill was defending himself pretty well, if Jones was a it more powerful, and Hamill had showed any signs of being in real danger, it would have been stopped. he also had the option to verbally submit.

The fight you describe is far less brutal than any beating that Gerry Quarry, Gerry Cooney, Tex Cobb, or even Evander Holyfield ever took.

After the fight Hamill had a small abrasion on the bridge of his nose and a separated shoulder. Far better than taking head shots for 12 rounds.

December 19, 2009 9:56 PM  

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