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Enough is enough

Chael Sonnen has never been my favorite guy. While a great fighter and the only one to solve the puzzle that is Anderson Silva in his heyday (partially anyway) – his loud mouth WWE wrestling style never took with me. While he did bring a lot of eyeballs to the sport, I always thought he was fake, and called for fights he knew he couldn’t win. So it came as a surprise when I found out he was coming out of “pure anger” for the current state of the game.

Chael Sonnen recently signed with Bellator at the age of 39. In a conference call with Bellator MMA, Sonnen revealed the real reason he decided to sign with the Scott Coker run organization.

“I keep watching these guys, and it’s like Marshall Mathers says: they might walk like me and talk like me, dress, act, not give a dang like me, and they just might be the next best thing, but they are not quite me,” Sonnen said Friday on a Bellator conference call. “I’m watching these guys and they’re talking about money and who their opponents are and the weight class and then this happens. Who cares about all of that stuff?

“You either want to fight or you don’t, and one of my main motivations for coming back is pure anger. I sit back as a fan, I watch these guys quibble and squabble. I put this deal together with Coker over three phone calls. I didn’t negotiate. I didn’t ask for anything. I wanted an opportunity to fight, that was it. And he’ll tell you the same thing. It was as simple as that.”

What resonated with me is when he started talking about the fans. And how they’re the ones being cheated in this UFC age of shot calling and importance being placed on money.

“I am legitimately pissed off as a fan when I sit and read about guys who will only do this for ‘x’ amount of money, and everybody needs to be bribed,” Sonnen said. “They need this big carrot dangled in front of their face. It comes back to the Olympic spirit. It comes back to ‘let’s get that world championship.’

He’s saying a lot in that statement. While it’s arguable that he’s the one who essentially started this new age, even he’s saying it’s enough. We need to bring back the olympic spirit, with the importance being placed on being the best in the world, winning a championship. C’mon guys, let’s make the UFC great again.

Now let’s get realistic here. Sonnen is not the most altruistic guy and could be using this as an angle, he’s a genius at making people tune in. But either way, the message is true. While economy is definitely a real thing when you’re getting punched in the face with a possibility of irreversible head trauma, it’s only a part of it. There should also be that strive for greatness.

“Do you want to do it or not? And the right guy, the best guy, every time says yes. And (number) three and four and five can go and do all these pity parties and come up with all of these reasons why they don’t want to jump and fight. I’m not one of those guys. I want to do it.”

I will give Sonnen this, while he’s been the character many of the UFC personalities he is now criticizing are based on, he’s willing to step in there with anyone and never turns down a match. In that capacity, he’s a real fighters fighter. But in the same breath, he goes on to talk about UFC numbers, and how he wants to have the highest PPV’s.

“I get competitive in other ways than just in the ring,” Sonnen said. “I want the highest rating. I want the biggest pay-per-view numbers. I want to move more t-shirts and more tickets than anybody else. I look at those numbers, and I had all of those records. I retired. When I retired, I got beat. All of those records are gone now. I used to have the North American gate (record). I used to have the pay-per-view (record). We were on FS1, I had the FS1 (record). I had them all. I’ve lost them all, and I’m here to get them all back.

Only time will tell what Sonnen’s really about, but the real question is what do you think of the message? Do these new school premadonna’s rub you the wrong way? Or is shot calling and money grabbing precisely where we need to be going?

Chime in with your comments below.



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