Aug 15, 2012 - Thousands of minute details
differentiate fighting from other, more mainstream sports. But one of the most
stark, and most painful to watch from the sidelines, is how brutally unforgiving
Father Time can be.
This isn't basketball or baseball, where, at worst, staying a bit past your
time leads to an awkward lesson in humility courtesy of a young up-and-comer. Of
course, our sport has those moments, but along with the embarrassment comes
potentially catastrophic injury and life-altering damage to your mental
We've seen in countless times before. The end comes suddenly for fighters,
and once it's gone, it ain't ever coming back. For Mirko "Cro Cop" Filipovic, the end came right around the
moment Brendan Schaub sandwiched the Croatian's face between his
fist and the canvas.
Seven months later "Cro Cop" retired from MMA after another jarring TKO loss.
At the time it seemed like a wise decision, if only to save his brain from
another traumatic session of ground and pound. Only now, it seems like "Cro Cop"
has that itch back.
"Concerning my retirement from the UFC, I said it was my last fight for the
UFC and last fight on the present contract, but I did not say, 'I won't keep
fighting," Filipovic explained to USA Today's John Morgan. "I never said that.
I think the best thing to say is that I was born to fight.
"My motivation now is to prove to everyone that I'm still capable of being in
the cage. I'm not old. I'm 37, but I can do things that fighters 10 years
younger cannot. ... I will prove that, or I will die trying."
That last line is exactly what makes this news so ominous.
5 MUST-READ STORIES Cro Cop considering return to MMA. Retired heavyweight legend Mirko
Cro Cop is apparently mulling a return to mixed martial arts, according to a
report from USA Today. GSP potentially open to Silva superfight. UFC welterweight champion
Georges St-Pierre discussed his renewed enthusiasm for mixed martial arts,
future opponents, and a possible mega-fight with Anderson Silva. Sonnen vs. Griffin. Chael Sonnen and Forrest Griffin will meet in a light heavyweight rematch on December 29,
2012 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Madadi saves drowning infant and father. Swedish lightweight Reza
Madadi joined the recent wave of good samaritan MMA fighters by saving a drowning infant and his father when
the toddler tumbled off a pier near Hornsberg, Sweden. Tate still gunning for Rousey rematch. Former Strikeforce bantamweight
champion Miesha Tate continued her campaign for a rematch against
rival Ronda Rousey, saying if she defeated Julie Kedzie this Saturday, she'd
deserve the next title shot.
For someone with the YouTube username "F--kZuffa," this fella still manages
to make a pretty sweet UFC 151 trailer.
The folks over at Inside MMA asked both Ben Henderson and Nate Diaz to compare each other's game. Bendo, of course,
talked about the infamous 209 attitude, while Diaz stuck with a more succinct
(and rather apt) answer: "F--k the belt. I'm trying to beat the No. 1 guy in the
I've posted this up before, but for anyone who didn't catch that
Sonnen-Griffin is a rematch, feel free to travel back to 2003 with me.
At any given moment in time, at least one team in the National Football
League is required to employ at least one small, undersized, usually white wide
receiver, who is known for his work ethic and grittiness and is loved far beyond
any reasonable assessment of his abilities.
At the moment, that guy would seem to be Wes Welker, who is kind of a crappy
example, because he's actually pretty freaking good, but he meets the standard
on all the other criteria, including the near-universal adulation that gets
heaped on him by fans, commentators and journalists.
Perhaps a better example though, for folks whose memory goes back a little
further, is longtime New York Jets slot receiver Wayne Chrebet. Chrebet was the
ultimate underdog story: an undrafted walk-on who became a 10-year starter. He
was known for his tireless work ethic and unbelievable courage, especially in
relation to his size. He finished his career with a bunch of Jets receiving
records, and the respect of the entire league.
I always hated that guy.
Maybe I'm a bad person, but I don't watch sports to see ordinary guys who
make it to the big time through grit and determination. I watch sports to see
trans-human ubermenschen doing things that don't seem physically possible and
making them seem easy. To me, guys like Wayne Chrebet really spoil the theater
of it all. In the midst of all these cyborg killing machines and gazelle-human
super beings, you got little Wayne Chrebet, gutting it out. Always chapped my
ass for some reason.
Anyway, I've been trying to put my finger on what I don't like about Frankie
Edgar, and I think that's it. It may not be terribly rational, but he just does
nothing to spur my imagination and awe. He's just like a guy at the gym, only
when you go home, he stays and hits the bag for four more hours. And when you're
waking up in the morning, he's doing roadwork and shadow boxing. He makes up for
his physical limitations with raw grit.
As I write it, I realize that sounds pretty admirable, but I just don't care.
I like my athletes bigger than life. I like Anderson Silva, slipping into the
Matrix and making professional fighters look like children; I like Jon Jones
stalking and eliminating elite fighters like some sort of genetically engineered
panther; I like Rousimar Pahlares tearing dudes' legs off and Paul Daley hitting
people so hard they forget their names.
I KNOW I'm not going to see that when I watch a Frankie Edgar fight, and I
find that knowledge enervating.
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