(Guess who’s not impressed by Franky Van Hove.)
Kyle Maynard – the former collegiate wrestler/congenital amputee with no arms past the elbow and no legs past the knee – will soon make his amateur MMA debut. If the name sounds familiar it’s because Maynard’s almost ridiculously inspirational story of overcoming his disability and wrestling at the University of Georgia has spread far and wide by now, and he even won an ESPY award in 2004 for “Best Athlete With A Disability.”
Now he trains at the Hardcore Gym in Athens, Georgia and has been saying for the past couple of years that he wants to get into MMA, but was denied a license to fight in Georgia. Apparently he faced no such issue in Alabama, because he’ll be competing at Auburn Fight Night on April 25.
A lot of people are going to say it’s crazy and maybe even dangerously negligent to let a guy with no hands or feet into a fight where his opponent is allowed to punch him in the face.
Here’s the thing: screw those people. Do a quick YouTube search and you’ll see he knows what he’s doing on the mat. He’s not some guy off the street, which is more than you can honestly say for Ross Clifton. Maynard trains at an MMA gym, and one assumes he has a plan for how he’s going to deal with the striking game (a plan I’m really interested to see put into action, BTW).
So to hell with Georgia, for not licensing him, and to hell with the people who think he shouldn’t fight. He’s going to fight, and we’re just glad not to be the poor schmuck who has to face him. Not only would that guy get booed if he just started teeing off on Maynard, there is also the very real possibility that Maynard will totally own his ass, like he did to this dude.