Wednesday, August 25, 2010

You can't ban one without the other

It was mae public today that some 250 Canadian Dr.'s have deemed MMA to be too violent, and voted to have a governmental ban on the sport throughout Canada, saying that unlike baseball, basketball, hockey, skiing, etc the main goal of MMA is to leave one's opponent incapacitated.  I have a problem with this.  When a hard skating power forward in the CHL takes an opponent into the end boards head first, and the kid leaves the rink on a stretcher, is he not incapacitated?  When Todd Bertuzzi tackled Steve Moore, breaking his neck, was Mr. Moore not incapacitated?  In a boxing match, the goal is to throw and land more punches to your opponents head than he lands on yours, ultimately trying for a knockout.  Is that not incapacitating? 

My problem with this is that, I was very active in Tae Kwon Do as a teenager.  Tae Kwon Do is a full contact fighting sport, in which you score points by cleanly striking your opponent to the chest or head.  A head shot is worth 2 points, and a shot to the chest is worth one.  Does the point system itself not lead one to believe that if you can hit your opponent in the head, your chances of winning are greater?  Oh and by the way, if you can knock your opponent out you win automatically.  Your average boxing match lasts 12 rounds, with an average of 9 punches being landed per round.  Now I've been watching boxing for a long time, and I love the sport, saying that I can tell you that 90% of punches thrown in a boxing match are thrown to the head.  That leads me to believe tha the goal in a boxing match is to incapacitate one's opponent. 

The issue (and I can't speak for the DR's) I think the doctors have is with the fact that once an opponent is down in MMA you can continue to strike them until the official stops the contest.  But look at it this way:  Boxing has what is called the "Standing 8 count" in which an opponent is knocked to the ground (most often by a series of blows to the head) and is given a count of 8 seconds to get to his feet and resume his fighting stance.  Now anyone who's ever been punched in the head hard enough to be knocked down knows that it takes longer than 8 seconds to clear the cobwebs.  And more often than not, when a combatant receives a standing 8 count they go on to be knocked out later in the fight, thus enduring countless more rounds of punishment.  So you tell me which is more brutal, getting knocked down and hit 2 or 3 times more before a fight is stopped.  Or getting knocked down, and being hit anywhere from 10 to 50 times more?

You can't ban MMA in this country without banning all other combat sports, maybe hockey, and definitely football.

But what do I know, I'm just a blue collar slob.  A blue collar slob who lives and breathes sports, and you're an old relic with an overpriced education and an undertaxed bank acount.

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