Is MMA Killing Boxing?
Over the past years MMA events like the UFC have been gaining serious ground over Boxing. Proof of that is the fact that last year UFC pay-per-view events raised more money than boxing events. Boxing promoters and TV commentators are constantly attacking MMA which proves their concern with the meteoric rising of MMA events not only in the U.S. but all over the world.
Boxing has been on the main stream for as longs as I can remember with great fighters like Gorge Foreman, Mike Tyson, and Evander Holyfield not to mentions the legends like Muhammed Ali, Rocky Marciano and many others who made boxing one of the most prestigious sports there is.
I’m a huge boxing fan myself but unfortunately over the past 5 years it lost the glamour and the prestige that once made boxing a sport to watch. I can’t remember how many nights I stayed up till 4 or 5 in the morning waiting to see Tyson fight.
That is one the biggest problem with boxing these days there isn’t many idols like before. Ask any 20 year old these days who is their favourite boxer; I’ll be surprised if they say any. You see, boxing is lacking idols and idols are what drive revenue in sport.
Now go and ask the same 20 year who is their favourite MMA fighter and I bet he will say: “From UFC or Strikeforce, in what category?”
In its early days MMA events were considered brutal and no TV station wanted to broadcast its fights. So what made them change their minds? What changes everything is sports these days, MONEY.
When it all started the only way to watch UFC fights was by renting video tapes now you have cable channels dedicated specifically for MMA and the main events can only be watched on pay-per-view. MMA merchandising power has grown exorbitantly and surpassed boxing, reason it has gained so much exposure recently.
There is even a reality show named The Ultimate Fighter that is in its 13th edition, where amateur Mixed Martial Arts fighters fight to become professional. Hence the fact that many fighting in UFC these days have come out of this reality show.
Even renowned boxing equipment brands are making MMA equipment which is moor proof of the merchandising power MMA has these days. Just for the record when Dana White bought the UFC from the Gracie Family it was worth 2 million Dollars now it is a 2 billion dollar business.
But that is not the only reason MMA is more popular than boxing these days. MMA’s audience consist in its majority of a generation that grew up playing video games like Street Fighter, Tekken and many other fighting games where characters had different fighting styles which is the essence of Mixed Martial Arts.
This generation is also more dynamic with great eager for action and MMA fights deliver just that. While boxing can become rather boring at times, 12 rounds without a knock down can be tedious to say the least.
All said, I leave you with the question: Is MMA Killing Boxing?