Ring or Octagon?
Let me get the obvious part out of the way for everyone before we really debate this. Yes, the octagon is much cooler than a standard ring.
Now, here’s a real argument.
Would it not be a million times easier to convince the narrow minded media and traditionalists that MMA is certainly a legitimate sport if they used a ring? Sure, they would be throwing away a lot of tradition as far as the UFC goes, and this will never happen as long as we live.. But I feel the UFC would find itself on ESPN a lot faster if they could find a way to make that happen. When you look or hear about a cage fight, you automatically think of the word gimmick, a word UFC wants to avoid as a way of avoiding any comparison to wrestling. I was a pro wrestling fan before I was a fan of any sport, as I had been a fan since somewhere around age 2. You aks me just about anything about wrestling past, or wrestling inner workings and 9 times out of 10 I can give you the correct answer. Since I started getting into MMA completely, I can’t even look at a wrestling show without cringing. (Though that might have something to do with the decline of quality in their programming)
My point? As a wrestling fan, I used to have my doubts on whether UFC was real or not. I mean, it was obvious they hurt each other. It was obvious people suffered legitimate injuries. It was obvious that they weren’t trying as hard to make it super entertaining 100% of the time, but when you are looking at a cage, along with a slogan that says “As real as it gets” you begin to wonder who they are trying to convince with that slogan.
Anyway, around 1999 I went to a fight in person and learned right away that it was a whole new ball game. Would it not be a lot more simple if not everyone had to go through the same transition that I did? Pride and K-1 will always appear more legitimate to the media and the untrained eyes of the narrow minded people as long as they reside in a ring, while UFC remains in a cage.
My opinion. What’s yours?
"If there's a little blood, people like to see blood, it makes it interesting." - Forrest Griffin