MMA is almost there, we promise. The point of MMA, and in particular the UFC hitting different countries around the U.S. and world is to spread the word, grow the sport and most importantly dispel silly notions about the brutality and safety of the sport. UFC is hitting Kentucky for the first time, so not surprisingly, the Louisville Courier-Journal has the typical "intro to MMA story" in this morning's paper.
The story titled "UFC mixed martial arts a bit more mainstream now" is built around quotes like this from Mark Munoz and Martin Kampmann:
"Mixed martial arts is misconstrued as a brutal and barbaric sport," Munoz said. "People's first impression was formed when it first came out: It was no holds barred, and people still think of it like that."
"When you say you're fighting UFC, they still think it's like 1993. They think you go in there and fight a sumo wrestler until one of you is dead," said Kampmann.
The writer C. Ray Hall warns Kentuckians:
Some, no doubt, are interested in seeing how it goes. First-timers at tonight's fights may be surprised and mystified.
Barefoot men armed with fingerless 4-ounce gloves will climb into an eight-sided ring ("the Octagon" — a trademarked name). The ring is bordered by a chain-link cage/fence that's 5 feet, 9 inches tall. The combatants use fists, feet, elbows and knees.
When a fighter hits the deck, his opponent will not retreat to a neutral corner. The aggressor may straddle his opponent's chest, raining punches on the face of the prostrate unfortunate.
The face in question assumes a "give-me-a-minute-to-think-of-something-here" look until its owner thinks of something or gives up, consciously or unconsciously. Or the man on top will try to maneuver the poor unfortunate into a choke hold that carries a picturesque name such as "guillotine" or "reverse naked."
The guess is here is that amongst the 9,000 expected to attend the event at the Yum! Center, there won't be many "first-timers" as far as viewing the sport. Just a guess. But thank you C. Ray, we all appreciate the public service you've provided.
UFC on Versus 3 weigh-in (Courtesy MMAjunkie):
MAIN CARD (Versus)
PRELIMINARY CARD (Facebook)
Cyrille Diabate (205) vs. Steve Cantwell (206)
Danny Castillo (155) vs. Joe Stevenson (155)
Shane Roller (156) vs. Thiago Tavares (156)
Reuben Duran (136) vs. Takeya Mizugaki (136)
Rob Kimmons (185) vs. Dongi Yang (186)
Dave Branch (186) vs. Rousimar Palhares (186)
Todd Brown (205) vs. Igor Pokrajac (204)