I took advantage of one free month of UFC Fight Pass, thanks to a Chromecast offer. Much to my wife’s dismay, the last 30 days have been filled with mixed martial arts fights from the UFC Library, which also contains fights from Pride, Strikeforce, Affliction, and a few others. I didn’t get through all of the fights in a month, but I was able to watch a few dozen matches, from the legendary Royce Gracie to the just-upended Cain Velasquez. I watched in horror again as Anderson Silva snapped his leg against Chris Weidman, I was thrilled again by the Jon Jones vs Alexander Gustafsson war, and I cheered again any time Mark Munoz stepped into the Octagon.
The best part of having access to all of these fights was seeing how the sport has evolved. Gracie was the pioneer, of course, bringing Brazilian jujitsu to the forefront of mixed martial arts and the UFC. What’s great, though, is that fighters today are so much better than they were 20 years ago. It truly is mixed martial arts now, as those with varied skill sets thrive, while the single-discipline practitioners find themselves left behind. Remember when Lyoto Machida and his karate background was going to make a long run at the top? He defended his belt exactly one time before losing it to Shogun.
Of course, even the best fighters eventually taste defeat. The unbeatable Silva finally met his kryptonite in Weidman. Injuries proved to be Velasquez’s worst enemy, while Jones’ indiscretions have been his. The fact that the best are fighting the best, though, is why I love the UFC. It’s the most entertaining combat sport today. While boxing won’t ever go away entirely, the promoters have ruined what was once a great sport. If Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather were in the UFC, we would’ve seen them fight in their primes, not five years later.
While I didn’t see any reason to subscribe after the free month, hardcore fight fans could do some major MMA binge-watching with the Fight Pass.