Now that Alistair Overeem’s botched drug test has officially thrown UFC 146 and the heavyweight division into a state of anarchy, everyone from Frank Mir to, believe it or not, Fedor Emelianenko, have been rumored as The Reem’s potential replacements for the May 26th showdown with current champion Junior Dos Santos. But one campaign that would have made 90 percent of the MMA world piss their pants with laughter as little as a year ago is really starting to gain some steam. We’re talking, of course, about #RallyforMarkHunt.
Yes, it seems the iron jawed, soft spoken “Super Samoan” has captured the hearts of MMA fans around the world, who have in turn organized a Twitter campaign to have Hunt fill in for Overeem despite already being booked to take on Stefan Struve at the same event. Perhaps it is our love for a good old fashioned Cinderella story that has been the driving force behind a movement rivaling Occupy Wall Street in terms of actual demands met, or perhaps it is simply Hunt’s legendary status with the hardcore (re: true) fans of combat sports. In either case, UFC color commentator Joe Rogan has officially drank the Kool-Aid, posting the following message on The UG:
There are some wise people on this board, and I support this movement.
Style wise that might be the most exciting match up. Either way, even if Hunt doesn’t replace the reem I would still love to see this matchup down the road, especially considering how good Hunt looked against Kongo.
Has anyone started a twitter bomb campaign for this?
Although Dana White has revoked his earlier statement that both Cain Velasquez and Frank Mir would not be filling in for Overeem in his possible absence, he has to see the potential media firestorm that would come as a result of Hunt actually being booked for this fight. And as we all know, any press is good press, right?
Over the last two years, Hunt has had one of the most improbable career comebacks in MMA history, rebounding from a six fight losing streak that dated back to 2006 by scoring consecutive wins over Chris Tuchscherer, Ben Rothwell, and Cheick Kongo. His record may stand at a mediocre 8-7, but Hunt’s well documented striking prowess and damn near unbreakable chin would make for a hell of a fight if he were paired against someone like JDS.
But the question likely on White’s mind is that of PPV sales. Hunt’s name does not carry a lot of weight in the casual MMA crowd, as sad as it is to say that, so placing him in the headlining bout of the biggest card of the summer could potentially mean disaster for the UFC, money wise. Then again, they could always play up the aforementioned Cinderella story if they really wanted to sell this thing.
And for those of you who will be quick to complain that Hunt’s win streak is not significant enough to earn him a title shot, you can simply suck it. Maybe you recall a time, about four years ago, when a young buck from the fake fighting world was awarded a title shot after going 1-1 in the UFC, with that lone win coming by way of decision over a now retired fighter. Does one injustice warrant another? Obviously not, but Hunt has paid his dues, has notched up a few impressive wins in a row, and since the UFC has thrown the rankings aside before, why not make another exception for “The Super Samoan?”
Maybe we’re getting ahead of ourselves. Alistair’s future has yet to be determined, but needless to say when a fighter is caught juicing, it doesn’t look good. And besides, you all know that the mere possibility of Mark Hunt becoming the UFC heavyweight champion would be enough to give you an erection lasting more than four hours. So let’s make this happen.
What say you, Potato Nation?