(Can professional Droog-style gang-fighting be far behind?)
For almost as long as MMA has existed, there have been scheming fight promoters trying to one-up normal cage-fighting with increasingly bizarre variations. We’ve seen three-man MMA, better known as “two guys beating the shit out of another guy.” We’ve seen tag-team MMA, which makes even less sense from a logistical perspective. We’ve seen Montana-style Motocross MMA, and the abomination known as XARM, and we’ve gleefully mocked their stupidity. If two men fighting each other isn’t exciting enough for you, you probably just need better cocaine.
The latest entry in this dignified line of MMA offshoots is two-on-two MMA, which will be part of the next Desert Rage Full Contact Fighting show, October 20th at the Paradise Casino in Yuma, Arizona. As fighter-turned-promoter Chance Farrar explained to MMAJunkie, “We started trying it in the gym, and it’s been successful. It’s nothing short of controlled chaos, but exciting. You can’t predict what’s going to happen…This fight does not last. That’s why I’m bringing it to Desert Rage. I think the fans want to see it.”
Here’s how it works: Weight classes are determined by a team’s collective weight. (Lightweight is 350 pounds and below; middleweight is 425 pounds and below; and heavyweight is 500 pounds and below.) Rounds will be five minutes each, with a one-minute rest period between each round, but there will be no limit to how many rounds a fight can go. No elbows or knees will be allowed.
Two referees will do their best to control the action. When a fighter is stopped by knockout, submission, or referee stoppage, a one-minute rest is called to give officials time to remove the eliminated fighter, before the fight is re-started. If an eliminated fighter is unable to leave the cage within the one-minute period, the other team wins by forfeit. The match ends when one side loses both fighters.
Here’s Farrar defending his creation: “People are trying to pawn it off as some kind of gang fight. That’s not the case. The people fighting at this time are … the lower level guys that are crazy enough to attempt it. I’m a huge MMA fan and the last thing I want to do is bring anything less than pride to this sport. But I do believe that there’s a lot of merit, and it’s definitely not a tag-team. People want to paint it as a sideshow. That’s definitely not the case. This is a serious fight, and there’s a lot of team aspects that are added that are exciting.”
Does two-on-two MMA sound crazy? Sure. But it reflects reality in a way that those other MMA variations don’t. This is basically a controlled version of you and your buddy getting into it with a couple of knuckleheads at a bar. There are no weird tag-in rules. There’s no every-man-for-himself Battle Royale element. There are no motorcycles flying above your head. It’s a normal fight. The only difference is, you have a wingman by your side, which will compel the fighters to cooperate, or occasionally come to the defense of their teammate.
So yes, you MMA purists will have to forgive me, but I want to see this thing as soon as it hits YouTube. In fact, the only hypothetical MMA variation I want to see more is 3-on-3 MMA held under King of Fighters ’94 rules. Think about it. You have a Blackzilians team composed of Rashad Evans, Tyrone Spong, and Michael Johnson, facing a Blacktalians team composed of Chris Weidman, Constantinos Philippou, and a 215-pound Matt Serra. The leadoff men from each team fight one-on-one until somebody is KO’d or submitted, and then that defeated fighter is immediately replaced by the next person in line on his team. The fight continues until all three members of a team are eliminated. Why the hell not, right? The world has already gone insane…