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A Pro Wrestling Education To The Hardcore MMA Fan – The Punk Spunk

Hazwady

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There have been a lot of criticisms hurled at the UFC signing of CM Punk and I feel it is mainly due to the negative perception MMA fighters and fans have of pro wrestling. I’m not writing this to change your negative opinions of the CM Punk signing but rather provide you with a better understanding of what pro wrestling is, my thoughts on the situation as a fan of both and of course, attempt to draw “cheap heat”(a pro wrestling term for the bad guys in pro wrestling to gain animosity from the audience).

*Note: There will be plenty of pro wrestling terms that I will explain along the way.

Ken Shamrock left MMA in 1997 to join the WWF.

Ken Shamrock left MMA in 1997 to join the WWF.

I started watching pro wrestling since the 90s and Ken Shamrock who was a pro wrestler in the WWE(known as the WWF back then) was the man who got me watching MMA; Mainly Pride FC and UFC on top of other promotions. MMA didn’t stop me from following pro wrestling although I stopped following WWE after Chris Benoit and Eddie Guerrero dropped their titles but was and still is an avid follower of the minor leagues like TNA & ROH. When CM Punk made his infamous “shoot” promo (which I will explain more later) on live TV, I regained my interest in watching WWE where CM Punk became the longest reigning WWE champion(434 days) in the modern era.

Is pro wrestling fake?

Wrestling is as fake as your Steven Seagal and Jean Claude Van Damme movies. Like how people would pay money to see Jet li beat up twenty guys at once, pro wrestling is as such albeit to a live audience.. Coreographing moves, fixing pre-determined finishes and creating scripted fueds between pro wrestlers usually a good guy vs a bad guy (Some do have real life hatred between them which tends to add up to their on TV fueds).

Ex- UFC fighter Dashon Johnson who have been criticized of being padded to a 9-0 record

Ex- UFC fighter Dashon Johnson who have been criticized of being padded to a 9-0 record

Some would agree that certain elements in pro wrestling is similar to MMA to an extent for example, Goldberg (a pro wrestler) had an undefeated streak demolishing jobbers (equivalent to cans in MMA, also known as meat in the South East Asian region) in WCW and so does Dashon Johnson who was notoriously demolishing fighters with negative win records and made it to the UFC.

But MMA is real dammit! People get hurt!

Well surprise! Pro wrestlers get hurt wrestling in pro wrestling matches too.Though pro wrestlers should never intent to hurt one another, accidents do happen and there are many famous incidents in pro wrestling history where the wrestlers mutually agree to take real kicks or punches or a slam on a concrete floor. It is also noteworthy that unprotected chair shots to the head (where wrestlers doesn’t use their arm to protect their head) have led to concussions and WWE eventually banned unprotected chair shots in 2013.

Brock Lesnar was famous for toughing out unprotected chair shots(link above, best quality we could find) and some would argue that it is somewhat related to how he toughed out Shane Carwin’s ground pound for the most part of round 1. Pro wrestlers more often than not spend their lives busting in the gym to keep in shape. Drugs and PEDs are reportedly rampant so as to endure the type of punishment they have to deal with every other day.

Ok,Ok! I get it they are tough. But Punk is 0-0, with zero martial arts background and who is he to rain on the parade of fighters who have already paid their dues?

As I mentioned the infamous “shoot”(unplanned, unscripted or real-life occurrence within a wrestling event) promo earlier in this article, CM Punk, whose WWE contract was expiring, rose to stardom when he was given an opportunity to speak about his frustrations with his current company on and a live telecast event. In line with the majority of the pro wrestling fans feelings abut the current state of WWE, CM Punk criticized WWE’s policy of pushing stars undeserving of the limelight when he was arguably at the time considered as the best wrestler in the ring and also the best speaker on the mic. His controversial speech peaked when he said ” This company will be better after Vince Mcmahon (WWE owner) is dead” turned into an overnight sensation where he was called up to appear on various talk shows and radio podcast all over America. With this in mind, as a well known persona in the entertainment industry CM Punk would definitely be a great influence to increase the popularity of the UFC and MMA as a whole.

Cm Punk rolling with Rener Gracie

Cm Punk rolling with Rener Gracie

Though his Kempo and BJJ background might be questionable, he has revealed of his great rapport with legitimate MMA gyms AKA, ATT and Roufussport(it would be interesting to see him here after Ben Askren’s infamous tweets about him) and it would be safe to say that he will be training with the best MMA have to offer. The speculated time of 6 months preparation seems extremely short for him to be ready for the UFC but it would be interesting to see what these world class gyms could make him into.

But it’s a no brainer that UFC would match him up with a guy who he could easily win.

Now that would be left in the hands of Joe Silva and Sean Shelby. Despite the backlash these past few days, fans and fighters alike will definitely be tuning in to claim their preconceived notions. Either way, it should be a win win for the UFC, if and only if they match him up with someone the majority of MMA fans considers legit. If he does fail miserably, UFC would already have made a handsome profit off the deal could take it on the chin and apologize stating it was a mistake. Though punk was game to fight, not everyone can survive in the octagon but if he succeeds, the skeptics shall be a believer and MMA with the help of Punk’s success could be bigger than ever and as a fan of both I am more inclined towards the latter. All and all, UFC made a calculated risk and I have full trust that the UFC would be smart enough to prevent their company and MMA as a whole drown in the depths of mockery that they are currently floating in.

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. James Jayme

    December 9, 2014 at 1:56 am

    What about signing guys with zero question on their resume? Kron Gracie? Shinya Aoki or maybe Ben fucking Askren? Even Gabi Garcia will make changes for women’s MMA. CM Punk signed by the UFC is really crap. That turns the most elite MMA organization to a circus.

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Ovince Saint Preux Steps in to Face Corey Anderson at UFC 217

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UFC 217 just got even more interesting. Earlier this week, Patrick Cummins pulled out of his light heavyweight matchup with Corey Anderson due to a Staph infection. Corey “Overtime” Anderson was not happy with his opponents decision, even calling out his opponent on Instagram asking how Cummins could, “call it quits so far from fight night”.

The UFC left Anderson on the card, and he found an opponent through the magic of Twitter. Ovince Saint Preux tweeted out directly to Anderson stating:

It didn’t take long for Anderson to respond agreeing to the fight, tagging Mick Maynard and Dana White in his response.

Only a few short hours later, the fight announcement came from the official UFC twitter account.

 

This top 10 Light Heavyweight matchup should add to an already amazing card coming in November at Madison Square Garden. Saint Preux is coming off of back to back wins both due to the very rare von flue choke, he finds himself ranked #7th in the latest edition of the 205-pound rankings. Corey “Overtime” Anderson is 4-2 in his last 6 fights, but is coming off a brutal first round knockout loss to Jimi Manuwa in March.

With such a exciting fight added to this card, what do you see happening November 4th?  Will Corey Anderson bounce back and look to jump into the top 5 of the rankings, or will Ovince Saint Preux go for a third straight von flue choke? Let us know.

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*Watch* Bellator 185 Weigh in: Live Stream, Results

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Watch the live weigh-ins for Bellator 185 here.

Gegard Mousasi takes on Alexander Slemenko live this Friday night October 20th at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville CT. This is the first appearance for Mousasi in the Bellator cage as he looks to secure a title shot with a win over the very tough former Bellator champion Slemenko. Joining these men of the main card will be a pair of welterweights as Neiman Gracie from the famous Gracie BJJ family takes on Zak Bucia in the co-main event.

Full Weigh-in Results: (Updated in real time)

Main Card:

Gegard Mousasi (185) vs. Alexander Shlemenko (186)
Neiman Gracie (170.5) vs. Zak Bucia (170)
Heather Hardy (126) vs. Kristina Williams (126)
Ryan Quinn (155.5) vs. Marcus Surin (155)
Ana Julaton (125.5) vs. Lisa Blaine (122)

Preliminary Card:

Jordan Young (200) vs. Alec Hooben (194)
Costello van Steenis (185) vs. Steve Skrzat (186)
Vinicius de Jesus (170) vs. Joaquin Buckley (171)
John Beneduce (154.5) vs. Dean Hancock (155)
Timothy Wheeler (144) vs. Pete Rogers (144)
Don Shainis (150) vs. Matthew Denning (149)
Frank Sforza (149) vs. Vovka Clay (150)
Kevin Carrier (156) vs. Jose Antonio Perez (153)
John Lopez (126) vs. Billy Giovanella (125)

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Bellator 185 Fight to Watch: Heather Hardy vs. Kristina Williams

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Heather Hardy will compete in MMA for the second time at Bellator 185 on Friday night, as she faces Kristina Williams in a strawweight contest. The fight takes place on the main card at the Mohican Sun Arena in Connecticut.

Potentially, what Bellator have in Heather ‘The Heat’ Hardy is a major draw that they can build their 125 pound division around. While relatively new to the organisation she is fast becoming one of the more popular names on the roster. Her career is in the early stages, but many have already started to draw comparisons with former boxer turned MMA star, Holly Holm. Holm’s UFC success partly inspired the native New Yorker to make the switch from boxing.

Hardy is already an established world champion in the land of the ‘sweet science’, holding a 21 fight undefeated professional record. She made her MMA debut in June this year with a victory over Alice Yauger, at Bellator 180. At 35, Hardy is a late starter in the sport, but proved at Madison Square Garden against the credible Yauger that she has a bright future.

Hardy’s first outing in the cage was disciplined and composed. Despite a slow start in round one, Hardy grew in confidence as the fight progressed and her cardio never faltered. She mixed in plenty of kicks that complimented her boxing and looked at ease in the clinch, even defending a couple of takedown attempts in the process.

Despite looking on course for a decision win, Hardy forced the TKO stoppage with just thirteen seconds remaining in round three. Even a large cut that required seven stitches from an accidental head clash could not deny her victory.

Hardy was fighting an experienced professional, competing for the tenth time in MMA, which makes the win over Yauger more impressive. However, her upcoming opponent Kristina Williams will be making her professional debut.

There is little known about Williams except that she is 3-0 at amateur level. One of those wins came by way of submission so there may well be a threat to Hardy if the fight goes to the ground. More importantly for Williams is how she copes on the big stage against a popular opponent, who is more familiar competing in high pressure combat situations. If Williams can produce an upset it will be a huge boost in her young career.

But in all honesty, this fight is about Hardy. It’s about getting the win and gaining valuable experience. The boxing career is on hold while MMA takes centre stage. Beating Williams will mean she likely continues fighting inside a cage rather than a boxing ring.

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