With that being said, I/We have witnessed a fair share of “boring” fights in the past. Some don’t live up to the hype. Some involve massive amounts of “lay and pray.” Some involve a fighter running away from Nate Quarry for three rounds. On these occasions, I feel the same frustration as many fans do.
What I don’t do, however, is “boo” the fighters. Unfortunately, the crowd last night at UFC 149 felt a bit differently based on the chorus of disapproval that could be heard throughout the evening’s main card.
Please, allow me to be blunt; I ask you, dear reader, as the fan: Have you ever been in a sanctioned fight?
Have you ever felt the tremulous focus of walking out to the ring? The adrenaline surging through your body? Have you ever had that moment, as the fight starts, where you feel nerves, until being hit in the face; and when that hit happens, the moment of clarity when you calm down and say to yourself “oh, okay; I can do this.”
Then you can’t possibly understand what it is like to knowingly walk into a fight. To deal with a guy who has a reach you can’t get past, no matter how hard you try. Trying to engage with an opponent who is actively trying to keep his distance. To be hit, so hard, that it throws you off for the rest of the fight.
Our fighters (and yes, I say “ our” since we all have favorites that we will cheer for, regardless of the odds) go out there and put on a show for us. They leave their sweat, blood, and sometimes, tears, in the ring for us.
You, as the fan, don’t have to like every fight, but I beg you: Stop booing. You are booing a man who has left his blood on the mat for your entertainment. Fans don’t have to like their performance, but don’t disrespect the sacrifices that they make for your enjoyment.