It’s Superbowl Sunday today, as I write this. Tomorrow, I’m going away for a few days, so it’s now or never as far as posting a column for this week.
For a while now, I’ve been toying with the idea of doing a series of bits at the end of my columns called something like “MMA for the Wrestling Fan.” One of the points I really wanted to make was that Pro Wrestling has a natural advantage over Mixed Martial Arts in that, with the results being predetermined, the promoter can control and develop interesting storylines. In MMA, where on any given night anyone can be beaten (other than Fedor Emelianenko) that should be much harder to accomplish.
Of course, storylines in WWE have mostly stunk since Benoit’s title run, and rarely if ever lead anywhere these days.
Modern MMA, on the other hand, is rich with very compelling human drama. From Cro Cop pushing himself too hard because he loves fighting so much, through Shogun’s rise to the top of the division where his stable-mate is the champion, PRIDE is full of interesting storylines that it is easy to get involved in and people in whom I am genuinely interested.
Through their highly popular reality TV series, the UFC has succeeded in manufacturing storylines that people want to follow. Their most compelling story, by far, and one of the best stories in the history of modern unarmed combat, came to a conclusion on Sunday.
I’m not going to go over the story leading up to the match, and I’m not going to give a detailed account of the bout. I’m going to rip off Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass in an attempt to get across the emotion of the moment. I am also, right now, going to flat out beg you for feedback. Please, if you love MMA, despise MMA, are indifferent to MMA, or anything in between, take a moment to send me an email and let me know. I really want to get a feel for whether or not I should keep writing about it in my columns. You can click on the link below, click here or just write to gordi at insidepulse dot com. Thanks in advance for taking the time to do so.
If you have not seen Randy vs. Chuck III, and you don’t want to know how it ended, you should probably stop reading here.
Thanks for the memories, Champ!
O CAPTAIN AMERICA! my Captain America! your legendary trip is done;
O Natural you’ve weather’d 42 years, the prize you sought Chuck won ;
The end is here, the bell I hear, the people all exulting,
While follow eyes the slipping foot, the hard right cross resulting:
But O heart! heart! heart!
O the bleeding drops! I shout,
Where on the deck my Captain lies,
Knocked the f*** right out.
O Captain America! my Captain America! rise up and hear the bells;
Rise upÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬Âfor you are truly a hero ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬Âfor you Joe Rogan yells;
For you bouquets and ribbon’d wreaths ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬Â for you a front-office job?
For you they call, the swaying mass, the frothing, angry, mob;
Here Captain America! dear ex-champion!
That was one hell of a bout;
Is it some cruel dream that on the mat,
You’ve fallen, knocked the f*** out?
Captain America does not answer, he is too tired and sore;
Our hero does not hear our calls, he is champion no more;
The Natural is lying on the mat, his voyage closed and done;
From fearful trip, the victor, Chuck, comes in with object won;
Exult, O fans, and ring, O bells!
But I, without a doubt,
Cannot believe my Captain lies,
Knocked the f*** right out.