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Open Thread: Does Anybody Even Care Anymore?


(We know the feeling, bro.)

It’s been a rough year, Potato Nation. Over the last six months or so, there have been a hell of a lot of days where it seems like there’s absolutely nothing going on in the world of MMA, and we’ve often found ourselves struggling to find news items and discussion topics that are genuinely worth writing about. I can think of several possible explanations for this…

- Some of the greatest fighters in the world have been sidelined due to injuries (see: GSPJose Aldo) and steroid suspensions (see: Alistair Overeem, Cris Cyborg).

- Some of the most controversial fighters in the world are on semi-permanent leave. (see: Nick Diaz, Gina CaranoBrock Lesnar).

- Some of the fighters who got you hooked on MMA in the first place have retired. (see: Chuck Liddell, Fedor Emelianenko, Mirko Cro Cop, Tito Ortiz, Randy Couture).

- The increased UFC event schedule has made each individual event feel less important, both because there are so many of them now, and because truly “stacked” events are so rare.

- War Machine just hasn’t shared any good stories lately.

- I’ve been writing about this stuff for nearly five years, we’ve already published every single Top Ten list there is to think of, and I’m just burned out on the sport. (Full disclosure: I had my first kid in February, so maybe everything else just seems less interesting in comparison.)

Here’s what I’m wondering: Do you feel like 2012 has been a slow news year for MMA, or is it just me? And if the sport has gotten dull for you this year, why do you think that is? Are any of you more excited now about MMA than you’ve ever been? And if you believe that 2012 has been an off-year in MMA, do you think things will improve next year when everybody’s healthy again (fingers crossed)?

Give me your thoughts in the comments section. Don’t be shy.

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hitekredneck- October 21, 2012 at 12:18 pm
I'm not burned out on MMA, but the lank of understandable ranking in the UFC, the injury curse, some of the lackluster cards that have been put together, and entirely too much drama has dimmed the lights a bit for me.
Jugger- October 8, 2012 at 7:31 am
The year has seemed lousy to me. The only PPV I've bothered with was Henderson vs. Shogun. I still consider myself an avid fan because I visit MMAJunkie and CagePotato on a daily basis. For me, this year has been lame for two major reasons: 1) Injuries, and 2) UFC monopoly.
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The injuries are becoming infuriating. Why is this the new thing? UFC fighter insurance? Stupidity in training? I don't get it. What changed that fighters are now dropping like flies? I don't even get stoked about announced cards anymore because I've become so cynical. I don't even call MMAJunkie, "MMAJunkie" anymore. I call it "MMAInjuryReport". I log on every day to see who pulled out of the next major card due to injury.
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I don't like relying on one promotion to feed me good MMA. I liked the old days when Japan, and even Europe, were putting on cards and forcing the UFC to keep it's game up. Bellator had a great year last year, but they seem to be mailing it in for the time being. Perhaps they're just gearing up for Spike, but this latest season has been poorly promoted. With Strikeforce owned by the UFC (and on life support), it won't be annoying the UFC, forcing them to up their game.
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Has the "golden era" of MMA faded. I remember telling friends during the Pride vs. UFC days to enjoy the ride because "these are the good ole' days." I'm hoping I'm wrong. Only time will tell.
BaghdadBob- October 6, 2012 at 11:27 am
You could do a Top 10 List of Top Ten Lists.
remeadial- October 5, 2012 at 10:23 am
I am personally NOT burned out of the sport, but I agree with everyone that this year the sport felt less SPECIAL. I honestly think that the transition to Fox was the nail in the coffin. If you want a PPV model, then you have to treat the sport like my wife does sex, cut it off until I'm going crazy and then ask me to pay for it when there is an opportunity. $60 is a cheap hooker, so I gladly pay it up. I loved arguing with Football douches about why MMA was a great sport and that they were wrong about the violence, etc. Now, it's on Fox, and I have to explain that not every fight lasts 15 rounds like in boxing (JDS v. Cain).

That being said, I love the sport for what it is, a sport. I watch for the technique and the competition. I'm one of those weird guys that doesn't care if the guy wins by lay and hump, if that's what it takes to win, go right ahead. I also get giddy as a schoolgirl when Anderson Silva gets in the cage in hopes that I see something great.

The UFC needs to evolve quickly. The Ultimate Fighter is early reality show ... it needs a facelift. My friend is a reality show producer and can't believe it's still on the air in the format its in. People need stories these days, not mayhem.
PingPong- October 5, 2012 at 10:19 am
@ Ben

I have always ALWAYS thought Strikforce cards were better than UFC cards, Most of the events I have been to have been strikeforce(it helps that they have events in Florida). I liked how they somehow managed to put together compelling cards using UFC cast-offs. Maybe since all the fighters were trying to get into the UFC they were giving that extra mile.

Also from reading this comment section, I am glad that I am not alone in my feelings. This page should be printed and put into Dana's inbox.
J.Jones- October 5, 2012 at 8:52 am
@Gist - I think that is actually a really great idea, and will try to see if we can make it happen. As for the fight of the week, you can just submit anything to tips@cagepotato.com. Thanks for the suggestion man!
GistoftheFist- October 5, 2012 at 7:14 am
I've got an idea to bring in more traffic to Cagepotato's website. Does everyone see that link at the top of the site to the article about the 50 worst fighters in UFC history? Now, take all of your ranking articles and put them next to it. (Such as, the blank last legal stomp/headbutt/no glove fights or the 7 types you meet in every MMA gym) I frequently am talking to someone about these articles I read on this website, but I have to type it into google and hope I find a link to it because CP doesn't have them in an easy-to-find list of links. And tell us how to submit fights for fight of the week already!
Buster Hyman- October 5, 2012 at 12:59 am
as soon at the three prong stance was deemed a legitimate maneuver i stopped taking it seriously (im looking at you karma). vitor was a few inches to bringing me back on board, but alas....

the ufc should send half of their fighters to SF and make them fight their way into a small pool of UFC fighters who can actually be on PPV or headline anything relevant. relegate the shitty boring ones back to SF. you can still have a bazillon events but fewer actual UFC PPV cards that they can stack.

oh and kill greg jackson. make it a slow and painful wrestle fuck to the split decision death, then name segal the head trainer of jackson mma.
Gobbleston- October 4, 2012 at 11:40 pm
This article, and mostly the comments section, makes me sad. I'm sad that so many people have lost interest in the sport purely because of shitty over saturated cards. I think you people undervalue the fast forward button. But honestly though, I'm often more jazzed for the next strikeforce card than a ufc card in general. I suppose a part of my continued enjoyment of the sport is more like it's never been much of an event for me. Me and the wife watch something with dinner every night. Tonight might be Castle, or Boardwalk Empire. The next night might be a UFC DVR'd. Maybe too much expectation is what's hurting the sport for you guys.
Nippletwist- October 4, 2012 at 11:10 pm
my interest level with the sport has always fluctuated depending on what's happening in the sport. there are kind of gusts and lulls of exciting and dull periods in all sports. i get more excited about football and basketball when teams i like are winning or in the playoffs, or when they make interesting roster moves or something. and other times i lose interest when those things are not happening. mma is the same way, it's still my favorite sport, but it just has its better/worse moments.
MMAExpertNewb- October 4, 2012 at 10:50 pm
I care. I just care a bit less than I did a year or two ago. I still visit Cagepotato 2-3 times a day though. I may not read every single article anymore but I read a lot of them. Things aren't black and white. There are peaks and valleys. This is just a valley.
Hill-Billy- October 4, 2012 at 10:15 pm
Can't speak for anyone else but no...

In the old days I used to go the local tittie-bar every time there was a UFC card. We're talking like 3 4 years ago. The main events were always cool like the Rich Franklin Anderson silva matches... it was right around the time Hendo and Rampage came to the UFC from pride and fought for titles.. Exciting things were happening then other than in heavyweight.

Yeah. now there are too many cards and not enough stars and it really doesn't feel like any of it means a damned thing.

So sign me up. I don't care too. I'm just waiting for more wisdom from WarMachine (seriously, we need to get that guy into talk radio) I could listen for hours every day to him just saying whatever bizarre shit comes into his head)

And yeah danga, you suck.
Fordnandez- October 4, 2012 at 3:53 pm
I do not buy every UFC fight like I used to. Is it due to putting on too many events or is it due to it is no longer something new and interesting that we never seen before? Probably a little from column A and a little from column B. I am like most of the current fans for the UFC. I followed the sport in the early days and then really got hooked on the first Stephan vs Forrest fight. After that fight I either ordered the fight or went to someones house or bar with a bunch of friends and watched every single event. At that point and time it felt like a privilege to watch the fight and I cleared my calender to make sure I saw the event. If I missed one I was pretty pissed. I no longer feel that way, if I miss a fight I check web sites like this to see what happened. I think it also has to do with the guys that made us hardcore fans no longer being here and the fighters that we want to see fight seem to only fight once or twice a year. I think the UFC is too focused on expansion when they should be concentrated on keeping the current fans entertained. If you keep providing a good product it will continue to sell itself. My personal observation is that the UFC is not gaining enough casual UFC fans to offset the loss of the hardcore fans. Of course Dana White is going to provide data to state otherwise. But the fact that he is even addressing it might validate the claim. I remember getting pumped up when there was two UFC fights in one month. Now we get 4 events in 7 weeks so the mentality is I can miss this one but that is not a big deal because next week there will be another one and if I miss that one I can watch the one a couple of weeks later and I can get caught up on what happened on those other cards through the web.
RSparrow- October 4, 2012 at 2:45 pm
Open a new tab and Youtube the song "Mad World", then read the entire section again. It's fucking hilarious. Holy shit...
RSparrow- October 4, 2012 at 2:50 pm
Now get it together you pussies. OVER-REEM! OVER-REEM! Him and JDS are gonna make your balls drop again.
intercept440- October 4, 2012 at 2:31 pm
i still watch all the fights...what has waned is my interest in Cage Potato....i used to check it out and use my snarky unpolitically correct humor to illicit laughs and hateraid...but now......eh is about all i can say... i mean i would at least check it once a day if there was something we could all laugh about....like that one time you aired arriany's choweder flower a day early and dana told you he was going to fuck you worse than you ever been fucked before...i mean that shit was comedy gold.....now.....not so much....i blame it all on you fucks getting rid of the edit button
Beans2003- October 4, 2012 at 2:31 pm
I feel like the UFC is not investing in promoting up and coming fighters like they used to. It seems like they fight a certain stable of fighters and it feels a touch formulaic. For example, I predict the following happens over the next year @170lb

Fight 1: GSP vs Condit
Fight 2: Nick Diaz vs winner of fight 1
Fight 3: Winner of fight 2 vs winner of fight 1

so to me, we are basically watching the same fight over and over until New years 2014. When is J Hendricks going to get a crack at the belt? How about any of the others chasing him?

I like watching fighters develop and new challengers emerge, I hope the promotion gets back to that a little more.
Beans2003- October 4, 2012 at 2:33 pm
Correction - Fight 3: Winner of fight 2 vs loser of fight 1

...sorry :)
The_Dead_Cow- October 4, 2012 at 2:18 pm
I agree with you BG. I watch most to all of the fights, but it doesn't seem as exciting as it used to be (for me anyway). I guess I'm just burned out too.
smellypiratehooker- October 4, 2012 at 2:15 pm
Also...Xarm. I mean, with their trucker lookin' fatbodies and their handgrips for armwrestling, along with the skill and chess-like mindset to compete in such a sport. How is MMA supposed to deal with that trifecta of awsomness.
smellypiratehooker- October 4, 2012 at 2:11 pm
Nothing gold stays Ponyboy.
ArmFarmer- October 4, 2012 at 1:55 pm
Also, you haven't even broken in 135lb.. we weren't ready a 125lb division.. and this is coming from someone that wrestled at 125lb.. it's not just that they are small, it's that it's two entirely new batches of fighters I'm not familiar with. That, in combination with fresh batches of TUF scrubs, are making fight cards full of unfamiliar faces.
ArmFarmer- October 4, 2012 at 1:52 pm
I just don't understand how ufc can swallow every other organization, take all the best fighters in the world that used to be shared between pride, strikeforce, elite xc, dream etc. and then still put on a fight card with ONE fight I give a shit about seeing... This whole time I was all for the ufc being the one stop shop for mma, but now I see why everyone else wanted strong competition instead of all the fighters under 1 roof. Because you end up with Antonio Silva against some guy named Travis for a main event...
CheechFace- October 4, 2012 at 1:48 pm
First off congrats Ben on becoming a dad. You might have mentioned that in a previous post but that's the first time it registered.
I don't think that this year has been that much worse than previous years; the problem is that we are becoming blasé about it. When I first started watching MMA it was a challenge to get to see the fights that you wanted. The extra effort made getting to see these made the viewing mean more. Now we are all getting a bit spoilt.
I used to frequently watch two guys I had never heard of before compete (in footage so grainy you'd think all that compulsive masturbation as a kid had finally caught up on you) because I loved the sport. Now there are times when I can't even bother firing up the interweb to see some of the facebook fights, and these are meant to be guys that at least have some pro fights under their belts and is presented in HD, or near to it.
Granted, the focus of a lot of the fights in the last couple of year has shifted a little bit more towards wrestling than was previously the case and that may have taken away some of the more instant gratification that was evident in the earlier years.
You don't have to believe in Evolution, Evolution still believes in you.
I hope that we/I have changed with the sport and have/are gaining more and more respect for the more subtle moves that previously were jeered because it meant the fighters didn't "JUST BLEED" anymore.
RwilsonR- October 4, 2012 at 1:46 pm
This sport hasn't been the same since $kala left.
BJ Pencil- October 4, 2012 at 1:23 pm
I've been a big fan of UFC and mma in general for over 10 years and the only "fights" I give two shits about nowadays include: Junior Dos Santos, Jon Jones, Anderson Silva, and GSP. In other words, The Championship fights from Heavyweight to Welterweight. Any other fight does not warrant my 15 minutes tops...let alone 25 minute NON CHAMPIONSHIP FIGHTS. I mean c'mon! Travis Browne vs Big Foot Silva is considered a main event for 25 minutes? Umm...who the fuck are you Travis? And how did you get a main event slot???
angry little feet- October 4, 2012 at 1:21 pm
Don't assume an article wasn't well received just because it didn't get many comments guys. I think just the ones that are controversial in some way get a shit-ton of comments. Speaking only for myself here, but I almost always read all of the articles. I just don't always have a comment about them that bears sharing.
The12ozCurls- October 4, 2012 at 2:37 pm
For anything I get posted on CP - I base the success (or lack thereof) on the amount of comments generated. That is how it works. The more comments means the more hits to the CP site which means better business. It is a cyber pissing contest and if I didn't write something profound enough to constitute a decent number of comments – I somewhat view it as a turd. I understand what you are saying - but apparently trolling makes the world go 'round.
angry little feet- October 4, 2012 at 4:41 pm
Fine fine. If it will make you boys happy I'm sure I can come up with something ill-conceived and/or ignorant to say more often.
Fried Taco- October 4, 2012 at 1:47 pm
Same here. But I comment anyway.
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