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By: Jason Amadi, MMATorch Columnist
Nameless Reader writes: It seems like people are demanding immediate rematches for every close decision. This all seemed to start after Penn-Edgar. What is your opinion on the rematch?
A: May 5, 2007 Oscar De La Hoya and Floyd Mayweather Jr. engaged in a tense, close twelve round affair that shattered all pay-per-view records. The bout was highly anticipated and lived up to the hype by delivering a competitive, high level boxing match that will likely never be forgotten.
Twenty one days later, the UFC held their own highly anticipated affair. At the time, Chuck Liddell was the UFC Light Heavyweight Champion and was in the process of avenging all of his losses and further cementing his status as the greatest light heavyweight of all time. After beating Jeremy Horn and Randy Couture, the last man standing with a win over the "Iceman" was Quinton "Rampage" Jackson.
On May 26, 2007 the eyes of the MMA world were focused on the MGM Grand Garden Arena as Liddell and Jackson took to the cage. However, unlike the boxing match twenty one days prior, we didn't get half an hour of high level technique. We got a minute and a half of circling before Chuck Liddell committed to an amateurish left hook to the body that left him completely exposed to the counter right hand of Quinton Jackson. The fight ended at 1:53 of the first round, in perhaps the most deflating way possible.
I bring up these two fights because championship boxing matches are still the pinnacle of combat sports and as late as 2007, even the most anticipated of mixed martial arts bouts couldn't hold a candle to them.
Fortunately, over the years MMA has closed the gap a bit. We're consistently seeing such great action in five round fights that UFC President Dana White has mandated that all UFC main events now be five rounds.
However, the unfortunate downside to competitive five round title fights is the endless stream of whining, the cries of "robbery," and all of the foolishness that follows. MMA fans just don't seem like they're equipped to handle close fights, and quite frankly the UFC's response is no better.
If the UFC had their druthers, not only would they have Frankie Edgar rematch Benson Henderson, but they would have booked a rematch between Nick Diaz and Carlos Condit as well.
I don't care for all the immediate rematches the UFC is giving out these days. I just don't feel like it's against the law to earn a close, competitive decision victory.
We're finally at a point in mixed martial arts where we can expect most twenty five minute fights to send us on the kind of emotional roller coaster that was almost unimaginable just a few years ago. We should be celebrating the parity we're seeing today, rather than trying to foolishly rematch fights until they're no longer close.
Jon writes: With the addition of the Flyweight division in the UFC, is it likely that they will introduce a Super Heavyweight division as well? If so who are some of the top name fighters we could expect to see make the switch?
A: A super heavyweight class will never be featured in the UFC. There just aren't enough of them to support it and the guys who can't even cut to 265 pounds aren't the kind of athletes that the UFC wants to promote anyway.
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