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HannaJ

Opinion on UFC - Aggression vs Muay Thai Composure

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Hi Sylvie and Everyone Else!
I was curious to hear your (and everyone else's) thoughts on the UFC and other similar western fighting, apologies if you've answered this question before.
You've very clearly fell in love with fighting from the perspective of the non-aggressive, composed and unaffected Thai ethic that makes up Muay Thai and I wonder what your thoughts are on the predominant western and aggressive style that fights like the UFC play to. This might make for a really interesting topic on Muay Thai Bones!

Thank you for all of your time and effort!

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I don't mean to imply that ALL of Muay Thai is not aggressive. The point I try to make is that aggressiveness is not in and of itself a positive quality, but dominance always is. Sometimes that looks aggressive. Dieselnoi was aggressive; violent, even. I love him. Rotdang is fun to watch, he's very "aggressive," but also unaffected when he's hit back.

Kevin and I used to follow the UFC, we don't anymore. The fights just aren't as good, as far as my eyes go nowdays. That's fine, it's just not interesting to me anymore. Even when I was watching it pretty regularly, the problem with MMA in general to me was the caliber of knowledge from each fighter was pretty low. It's like being able to ask where the bathroom is in 5 different languages, but can't hold a conversation in any of them. But there are some fighters who had depth of knowledge in one martial art, like Lyoto Machida. He was interesting to watch. Rousey, before she tried to become more "well rounded" with shitty boxing, she was interesting to watch as  Judo player against very different skills.

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Eyes change when you spend a ton of time looking at a particular fighting aesthetic. You see things you would never have before, and you ignore things that otherwise would have been interesting. I don't know what happened, but the UFC just got very, very boring to watch. A lot of it has to do with MMA spacing, which involves lots of circling out, some of it has to do with the relentless hyping of every fighter as the greatest, or the baddest, or whatever. Ugh. It's exhausting. And, then some of it is what Sylvie said. I know people have enthusiasm for hybrid rules, and a whole new fighting style, but in some ways it feels like someone made up a sport called "basket-baseball-foot" mashing together basketball, Baseball and football. Yeah, putting the skills of each into one sport definitely makes you have to compromise and modify, but what I really miss are acme performances seen in the reflected history of decades and decades of development. It also is a little disappointing that the UFC hasn't really see a single high level, elite Muay Thai fighter, ever. The picture most fans have of Muay Thai in the UFC is basically just versions of western kickboxing, which isn't Muay Thai at all. I wish I enjoyed it more. I miss the good ol' days of the WEC, when we were just falling in love with Muay Thai.

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For me, it's especially all the show act surrounding the actual fighting that really pisses me off by now. I didn't ever closely follow the UFC but nowadays I hardly ever watch anything UFC.
I remember someone posting this press conference that happened before the Mc Greggor vs Nurmagomedov fight on a martial arts forum I sometimes visit and I just couldn't take it.... then I found a video of 3 hours of circus music on youtube and tried again with that playing in the background. Finally I was able to watch it... I think that kind of sums up my opinion on this topic and I didn't really say anything about the actual fights.

Watching Muay Thai (and also Kickboxing) has actually become much more interesting to me. That might have to do with actually having more insight from personal practice of course.

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To all my American friends on here, I apologise fro what is about to come out of my fingers. The UFC and all it's hype and associated bullshit is just way too American for me. It reminds me of WWF, which was okay when I was ten. 

Plus, I honestly think it lacks a certain kind of purity. 

Edited by Jeremy Stewart
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37 minutes ago, Jeremy Stewart said:

To all my American friends on here, I apologise fro what is about to come out of my fingers. The UFC and all it's hype and associated bullshit is just way too American for me. It reminds me of WWF, which was okay when I was ten. 

Plus, I honestly think it lacks a certain kind of purity. 

That's actually an expression I have used myself as well, "too American". I'm not saying "American" is a bad thing in and off itself, its just this kind of.... totally overdone, over the top "Americanism" that I hate.

I do actually sometimes watch MMA on different promotions where for me it feels more like ... I don't know... more like a martial arts event instead of a circus show.

This "style" of presentation seems to be wanted by the powers that be in the UFC, people like Connor play into this kinda thing very well of course and Dana White seems to totally be in support of stuff like that so I don't see it changing anytime soon. Like in this press conference I mentioned, Dana wasn't even TRYING to look unbiased or serious but instead totally played into and supported Connor's clowning around.

I mean it's ok to still be a funny guy even if you're in charge of some kind of event. Like my boss ( a few levels up, not direct boss) at work who will sometimes crack a joke when asked something during a presentation before he gets back to serious and actually answers but that kinda stuff happening in the UFC I just can't stand and can't take seriously.

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1 hour ago, Xestaro said:

That's actually an expression I have used myself as well, "too American". I'm not saying "American" is a bad thing in and off itself, its just this kind of.... totally overdone, over the top "Americanism" that I hate.

I do actually sometimes watch MMA on different promotions where for me it feels more like ... I don't know... more like a martial arts event instead of a circus show.

This "style" of presentation seems to be wanted by the powers that be in the UFC, people like Connor play into this kinda thing very well of course and Dana White seems to totally be in support of stuff like that so I don't see it changing anytime soon. Like in this press conference I mentioned, Dana wasn't even TRYING to look unbiased or serious but instead totally played into and supported Connor's clowning around.

I mean it's ok to still be a funny guy even if you're in charge of some kind of event. Like my boss ( a few levels up, not direct boss) at work who will sometimes crack a joke when asked something during a presentation before he gets back to serious and actually answers but that kinda stuff happening in the UFC I just can't stand and can't take seriously.

The grandiosity of the spectacle gets to me. The real or imagined animosity between fighters gets to me. The lack of humbleness some of the fighter have about them gets to me. Basically everything about it gets to me.

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UFC has just gone to shit lol. There is no debating it. They are going the boxing route now and it's gonna end poorly. It is funny to see how bad some of their "muay thai" strikers are. ONE is the only promotion to have legit strikers on their roster in MMA. Ever since the "WME" era the UFC has been going steadily downhill. No one ever believed their fighters were the best in the world in any on particular aspect, but the idea was who could nullify or outperform different aspects of the complete game. Now it's just all show and flash. Competition has gone out the window. 

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So many fighters signed and so many fight cards through the year, means the good fights are way more spaced out now than ever before. So you'll get a good headlining match up and the rest you could take it or leave it. Back in the day there weren't as many cards so their business model was to stack the deck so the whole main event and even prelims were solid, and the thing would sell. 

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Hi Hanna,

I think it is important to point out that the UFC is essentially a company, and its goal is to generate revenue. I've been a UFC fan for years but nowadays, it is all about money and promotion. The only fighter I follow is Francis Ngannou for his story. 

Now, to get more into detail about your question on agressivness and style: Muay Thai, in my opinion, is agressive but in the dominant sense. It is a way to put pressure on your opponent and also get the narrative of the fight in your favour.

However, in the UFC or MMA in general, fighters usually are much more agressive as the point system is totally different. Judges usually favour the one with more hits or more initiative. 

I also think the UFC is much less respectfull than traditionnal Muay Thai fights, and all that may make it look like it is more violent. 

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Personally I have always disliked when judges score aggression > dominance. Not just in the UFC, but competing in PKB's here in America! A Muay Femur can definitely dominate moving backwards by taking advantage of their opponent's aggression and using it against them.

Edited by Kwanzama
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