A sporting event where fighters from around the world, regardless of fighting style take each other on in a hexagonal steel cage. The contest is single elimination, damned close to no-rules and is usually quite brutal. Guys in the military enjoy watching this kind of thing. The ultimate steel-cage death match.

not only do guys in the military enjoy watching this, little white girls such as myself do too.

for me, the draw of the UFC is in watching and learning from the diverse fighting styles displayed in these tournaments. as a martial artist, i can see what works and what doesn't in full contact, no rules competitions (no rules being a bit of an exageration -- see the rules section below).

the UFC, in my opinion, has proved that in order to win an all-out, no holds barred fight, one must be proficient in fighting on the ground, where all fights seem to inevitably wind up. you might be able to kick like an action star, but when a wrestler gets you on the ground, those kicks aren't good for much.


the events may be single elimination tournaments, or a series of bouts. bout lengths are at the discretion of the promoter, but championship and superfight bouts are usually 20 minutes.

fighters must wear mouthguards and groin protection.

fouls result in fines and disqualification after any combination of three fouls. fines are $500.00 for the first, $500.00 for the second, and $1000.00 for the third. all of the following can result in a foul:


a winner is determined by:

Weight Classes

Heavyweight................200+ lbs

there are oftentimes specialized bouts where different weight classes fight against each other such as the "David versus Goliath" bout which pitted small against big.

Interesting Characters of the UFC

Dan "the beast" Severn (9-3) and Don Frye (9-1) seem to be cut from the same mold, they look quite a bit alike and have the same magnum p.i. moustache and itty-bitty speedo style shorts. Both are highly aggresive wrestlers who have shown dominance in gaining control of their opponent on the ground.

Tank Abbot (8-7) appears at first sight to be nothing more than a a huntington beach street thug who decided he was bad ass enough to take on large scale competitions. he is, admittedly, a tough guy, but winds up being beaten because he hasn't got the stamina (he's got a distinct beer belly) to continue fighting for long periods of time and seems unable to handle himself well on the ground. his style is listed as "pitfighting".

royce (pronounce "hoyce") gracie is easily one of the most famous UFC fighters in the history of the competition. a record of 11-0-1 makes him stand out as the most accomplished UFC fighter of all time. his stamina is huge, and he could continue fighting for hours until an opportunity for a joint lock or choke hold presents itself. he is a slight man, however gracie jiu-jitsu focuses on conserving energy which has helped him to overcome much larger opponents (such as Dan Severn).

and of course, the wonderful referee, Big John McCarthy is a UFC staple personality. he starts every match shouting "Let's get it on!" and has a great attention to the well-being of the fighters.
Ultimate Fighting Championship is also a bad-ass fighting game for the Sega Dreamcast by Crave Entertainment. Two contestants from a cast of around 30 UFC 'stars' square off in the cage, with a wide range of styles, moves, holds and other sneaky stuff at their disposal. The emphasis is on (ahem) precision timing, as fighters have the ability to catch each others blows in mid-execution, and can perform holds that can be reversed, broken out of or escalated to 'Tap-Out' moves with a button press and exactly the right moment.

Instead of the normal energy bar system, players have a two-colour bar that represents their overall 'health' and their stamina. A knockout can take place when either of these are depleted. UFC is rather different from most fighting games on console, and is also sufficiently different to (and not as lame as) WWF style games to deserve a look.

The presentation is rather lacklustre in places though, although the fighters and their wide range of animations are quite detailed. It's also ridiculously brutal. (Parents take note - you could learn some great tips for controlling your unruly kids here!)

The fall of the UFC-and its comeback:

The beginning of the end in terms of rapid growth for the UFC was in 1997, when the New York Athletic Commission banned the sport in their state for being overly violent, despite claims by the UFC that no serious injuries have ever been sustained(This was likely true-far fewer serious injuries are suffered in Mixed-Martial Arts than in Boxing). In the next couple of years, other states followed suit, banning UFC competition, and forcing UFC to hold events in southern states such as Louisiana. In addition, due to pressure from conservative politicians, the contest lost its vital pay-per-view exposure. By 2000 SEG Sports, the longtime owner of UFC, was looking to sell the organiziation.

This buyer came in January 2001 in the form of Zuffa, LLC, headed by Frank Fertitta, a wealthy Nevada casino owner. The first action after this acquisition was an effort to regain sanctioning from the various athletic/boxing commissions of the states. To do this, UFC was forced (perhaps unfortunately) to increase the safety of its rules. Among the changes were:

  • Mandatory wearing of protective gloves (these are actually to protect the hands of fighters from being broken, and are not like boxing gloves)
  • Banning of elbowing, head-butting, and knee strikes to the head while on the ground (some of these rules were partially implemented before the ownership changes)
  • New weight classes: Flyweight-125 or less, Bantamweight-125 to 134.9, Featherweight-135 to 144.9, Lightweight-145 to 154.9, Welterweight-155 to 169.9, Middleweight-170 to 184.9, Light Heavyweight-185 to 204.9, Heavyweight-205-264.9, and Super Heavyweight, 265 and up
  • Various other protections, such as referee training, mandatory fight doctors, 5 minute rounds, etc.

These rules were added in cooperation with the New Jersey State Athletic Control Board. UFC has now regained sanctioning in most states, and, in mid-2001, regained pay-per-view coverage with In-Demand, the largest such company in the nation. Other postitive signs of renewed growth in the UFC include increased prize money, a weekly syndicated TV show, and improved venues, such as the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.

Still, the UFC faces some major problems. For one, they are no longer the #1 MMA organization in the world- that title belongs to Japan's Pride Fighting Championships. Lured away by superior prize money and the respect fighters are given in Japan, many of UFC's former top stars, such as Mark Coleman, Mark Kerr, Gary Goodridge, and Vanderlei Silva defected to this organization. In additon, some of those in UFC who had gained great cross-market appeal, like Ken Shamrock, Royce Gracie, and Tank Abbott are no longer competitive in UFC. But perhaps the biggest difficulty the UFC faces is that the brutality that made it popular in the beginning has been greatly reduced by a combination of the rule changes and smarter, better-trained fighters. While early UFC fights generally consisted of two men punching and kicking each other in a martial arts movie-style fight, most modern UFC battles involve two men grappling and inflicting comparatively minimal damage on each other with the contest ending in a decision. This is obviously somewhat less exciting to watch.

In 2001 and 2002, a few new stars have emerged in UFC, with perhaps the most notable being Tito Ortiz. Like Tank Abbott, Ortiz resides in Huntington Beach. He also shares some of Abbott's personal qualities, like being a badass, showing minimal respect for his opponent, and having traces of mental instablilty. Unfortunately for the UFC, Ortiz has been injured for a few months since a training accident early in 2002. Carlos Newton is another popular competitor. Newton is Canadian, and has rather flamboyant dreadlocked hair. He breaks the traditional mold of MMA fighters, as he is currently studying Pre-Med in England, and claims to practice Dragonball Z Jiu-Jitsu. Other popular fighters include Pedro Rizzo, Randy Couture, and heavyweight champion Josh Barnett, whose title is now in question due to steroid charges.

Overall, the UFC is no longer simply a display of brutality. Instead, it has become a legitimate sport, with complex strategy and focused athletes. The success of UFC in the future depends on whether or not fans will find this sort of competition entertaining.

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