By Lance Levan
For almost two decades, I have been watching or been involved in the world of MMA. And for most of that time, the women that have attempted to compete in this combat sport have been scoffed and laughed at by a lot of fans, including this writer.
Their fights were not very skilled and they usually looked more like a fight you would be likely to see in a high school parking lot. The bell would sound, the two ladies would run across the ring towards each other and start flailing hay-makers at each other with their eyes closed until one of them would land a punch and usually knocked the other one out. Or they would tire each other out and someone would get hit with a big left-hook and get KTFO (if you don’t know what this means…google it).
These fights were very un-entertaining and gave women’s fighting a very bad reputation. It was almost three years ago that Dana White (president of the UFC) made a public statement that we would never see women in the UFC. I remember seeing the first women’s fight where I actually sat up and said, OUT LOUD…”Holy %$&#…that girl can fight.” It doesn’t matter who the fighter was (Gina Carano), but from that point forward, I knew that the girls were starting to get the training and the experience they had been lacking. What we all forget is that the first several UFC’s were horrible to watch, compared to today’s standards.
Very few of the competitors, with the exception of Royce Gracie, Dan Severn, Dan Frye and a few others, had any clue what they were doing. We’ve just become accustomed to seeing the “recent” UFC fights of the past few years where the boxing is high caliber, the wrestling is world-class and the Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is black belt level. For my money, three out of four times…I would MUCH prefer to watch a women’s MMA fight. They never back down or hold back. They never, and I mean NEVER try to get ahead by points and stall, just to get the win by decision. They always leave it all in the ring, each and every fight. A lot of the male fighters could take a few lessons about heart from the ladies.