Why the WEC Acquisition is a bad move.

Posted: November 1, 2010 in UFC

The UFC just bought the WEC. I don’t think it’s a good idea. I think it’s a push by the UFC to expand into the Mexican and Asian Markets, and I think it’s going to make for a crappier product.

The biggest reason I don’t like The WEC purchase is very simple. Lightweight fights suck. Smaller dudes are going to suck more.

The WEC features tiny fighters who bounce around for 15 minutes and don’t finish fights.

If I wanted to watch little brown guys NOT knock each other out, I’d watch boxing.

Which I don’t.

Are 135 lbs and 145 lbs fighters tough? Sure, They have great cardio and keep a crazy pace for 15 minutes. But I don’t want to watch a bunch of 15 minute decisions every card, and I don’t think they belong on Saturday Night PPVs that cost 50 bucks.

For the record. I have watched a WEC PPVs and I watch all the free fights on TV. I’m a huge fight fan. I enjoy the sport. All off it. But lighter weights are my least favorite.

I like events where big dudes knock the shit out of each other.

I think it’s most fans favorite part of the sport too.

When I turn on a fight I need there to be a chance of a dude getting knocked out. Now, not every fight has to be a knockout, but every fight has to have a chance of a knockout. Or I’m tuning out.

I want to see monsters. I want to see freak athletes. I want to see the toughest guys in the world. I want to see guys I’m kind of scared of.

Littering the card with little guys is going to make for lousy shows. And adding more titles is going to make it harder to pay attention to fighters. This is a bad move. The UFC does not need to be harder to follow. The UFC does not need to lighter than lightweights.

Don’t give me the pound for pound best fighters bullshit argument either.

There’s no such thing as “pound for pound.” There’s just best. Nobody says Usian Bolt isn’t the fastest runner because he doesn’t weigh as much as Ray Lewis. That would be a stupid argument. Is Brock Lesnar the pound for pound fastest man in the UFC? Who fucking cares? He’s really fast. I’m fine with saying some of fighters at 135 lbs are great fighters… for 135 lbs.

I’m fine with the WEC, and I don’t want to sound dismissive of tiny fighters, but I don’t want to give them the same coverage as the big guys. I don’t. It’s not as impressive when a 135 or 145 lbs fighter fights. He doesn’t run the risk of getting his head caved in the same way. Mexican Boxers or Asian Strikers can get hit all day in the face from each other, because the punches don’t carry the weight behind them to get the job done. The other 135 prototype is the American Wrestler, and wrestling is a boring fight style to watch. Period. But especially at that weight. Wrestlers are strong enough to hold guys down and not win. At 135 or 145 it’s easier to do that, because the punches they have to avoid aren’t as scary. Jujitsu guys at that weight suffers in a different way. Jujitsu is designed for smaller men to beat bigger men, to use their strength against them. A bantam weight fighter will just bounce up. He doesn’t have to exert the energy to stand or to grapple that 185 or 205 lbs man does. You can’t control a man that light from guard because he’s not going to get tired like a big dude.

The fights can have action, and if you really love fighting and understand grappling, maybe you can enjoy it, but if you’re looking for an exciting finish, or any finish. Don’t look to the WEC.

I don’t understand what Dana White’s thinking. Bringing in 2 inferior weight classes is a terrible decision.

Having more champions is a bad move for the sport, and jeopardizes some of the integrity of the UFC. People, myself included, bitched about UFC 119 not being any good.

Dana said that having more titlefights will fix that problem.

Bullshit.

UFC 119 didn’t suck because there weren’t titles on the line. It sucked because they’re weren’t good fighters on the card.

Mir? Not bad, but him fighting a dude who’s been getting his ass kicked isn’t a compelling main event. If he was fighting Junior Dos Antos I’d have been interested, or even Big Country Nelson. (I know they both had a fight coming up, I’m just saying rising stars are more appealing than fading ones.) It’s not because there wasn’t a title on the line that the card was weak. It was just weak. No qualifier necessary. Do you really thinking watching 2 guys that are the same size as Mir if you put them together fight to a 25 minute decision is going to fix that card?

More titles make each champion less of a champion. I’ve said before that I think there needs to be a new weight division around 230, and I am now stating openly, I was wrong. I didn’t think a 230 lbs guy could beat a 280 lbs guy. I’m sorry. I think as the sport progresses and more and more top tier big athletes migrate towards the sport it might be necessary, but it isn’t yet. But if a 230 lbs guy can fight up, so can a 145 lbs guy.

People like knowing the guys on TV. And they remember big guys better than little guys, because big guys can win fights dramatically. More people tuned in to watch Kimbo Slice than Georges St. Pierre. That’s a shame, but it’s the truth. If you were going to headline a TV fight, Kimbo Vs Tito Ortiz would be a great draw: and those are two garbage fighters, but people know them. Adding two divisions worth of no-names, especially foreign no-names (non-nombres) is not going to improve cards. Sure, you might be able to sell a couple of fights with Uriah Faber on them, he’s handsome, and puts on great fights. But they had better come fast, because he’s aging, and not that great anymore.

You can’t sell fight fans on little fighters. They’re not as good. They do not compete on the same level.

I don’t watch women’s basketball. Because it’s not as good as real basketball.

The fundamentals might be great. And If you really love basketball, you’ll get your fix anywhere you can. But admit it, it’s not as good. Like I said, I watch WEC, but I want it separate from the big boys, and I don’t want to pay for it. WEC worked because it was for fight fans, people who love MMA. But if you start clogging up fight cards with itty-bitty boxers and tiny wrestlers, cards are going to suffer.

MMA’s a great sport. But let’s not forget the UFC’s real appeal. It’s about, who is the toughest dude in the world. Who is The Ultimate Fighter? I’ll tell you one thing. He doesn’t weigh 135 lbs.

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Comments
  1. isaac landfert says:

    i disagree on the quality of ‘little dude’ fights. heavyweight is actually my least favorite weight class. i realize the two of us are arguing for guys our own size.

    heavies get gassed after 3 minutes, not all of them but most. yes you may see a guy get his brain smashed but you might also see two fat dudes sweat on each other for 15 minutes.

    the little dudes may not have the ko power but they are typically more technically sound than the heavier guys and since they don’t have the weight to just hold a guy down with gravity they tend to scramble more. the fights are faster paced and there is a deeper talent pool.

    it’s much easier to find a 150 lb man that can compete athletically than a 260 lb dude. the good heavies are playing “real” sports.

    now i’m only arguing against the heavy weight division. my favorite divisions to watch are light heavy- because they have most of the ko power of heavies (obviously none of them hit like carwin) and welter weight- they just seem to have a very deep talent pool. 170 is an easy weight for average sized men.

    middle weight always seems to be a no man’s land division for some reason. there is always a wide gap between the elite and the rest.

    light weight is fun but i actually think feather and bantam are better. light weights aren’t as small as most people imagine. i weigh about 155-160 lbs and light weight fighters are much, much bigger than me. a guy who is 5’9 and weighs 175lbs of solid muscle doesn’t seem that small to me.

    i agree with other things you’ve said. yes, little american wrestlers bore the shit out of the little divisions. but they ruin every division the same way. look at bellator- konrad, askren and warren are all doing it in feather, welter and heavy. no, pound for pound is not a good conversation- velasquez would kill domic cruiz- really, really kill him.

    all i’m saying is i would much rather see jose aldo fight on a ufc ppv than matt hammil or even ryan bader. hell, when it comes to aldo, i’d rather watch him than any of the ufc’s champs other than velasquez.

    would i rather see ben henderson fight than anderson silva? no. but i’d love to see the edgar/henderson fight. rather see leonard garcia over chris lytle? hell no. lytle’s a better fighter.

    there’s definitely a spots on the cards for good little dudes. spots being held by guys like alessio sakara or cheick kongo.

    • DJ Dangler says:

      I stand by my assertion that little dude fights aren’t interesting. But I will fully concede that my disinterest might very well be hinged to the fact that I’m a big fatty. I certainly don’t like watching two lousy heavyweights fight. But at the level the UFC has reached, I believe it doesn’t have to be lousy heavy’s. I also really believe that crowding cards with little guys is going to Poison cards. I Do Not Want To See 5 decisions a card. I also don’t want to be sitting at a bar watching the fight and listen to some drunk asshole buddy of mine say, “I could beat up that guy.” You and I both know they couldn’t. I don’t care if he’s 230 lbs and used to play highschool football. a 135 trained fighter will beat his ass. But I think if Dana clogs up cards with 135 and 145, that’s what we’ll see. It alienate mainstream audience. Keep great little fighters where only people who can appreciate them watch them, because forcing them on everybody will make the cards LESS interesting. I also think it’s already too hard to follow all the fighters. What weight’s Guillard at? Who’s Akiyama again? It’s cluttered as it is. Throwing a bunch of guys who all look alike (size here not race, I’m a sizeist, not a racist.) will make it hard to distinguish or care. If I turn on a fight I can probably tell you what weight it is by what the guys look like. 135 looks like 145. Period. In my opinion, same sized dudes. You Isaac, have the Best knowledge of fighters of anyone I know. My knowledge is pretty good, yours is excellent. I don’t want to go. “who was that guy?” every time I see a card with a tiny Mexican guy’s name on it (there I was being racist, but mostly just to keep things super honest.) Can little guys fight. Real well. Don’t want it on the card.

  2. isaac landfert says:

    you are right about not being able to tell the lighter weight classes at a glance.

    i bet you won’t have to worry about too many little dudes on the cards though. i think a lot of people share your opinion. the ufc didn’t have a light weight division for years due to lack of interest (and budget).

    you right, most men think thye are tough. i’ve heard enough guys say they could fight chuck lidell, maybe not win but fight him. those same guys are positive they would smash uriah faber. they couldn’t and wouldn’t.

    we’ll se how this goes. i’m hoping it means trimming the fat from all 7 divisions and leaving only the cream of the crop.

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