MMA pull outs how one boy became a man. 01 Aug 2018

The Scourge of modern MMA, 

If you are reading this blog then you are probably aware of the rigors of the sport of MMA. If you aren’t then let me assure you that there are few tougher sports in the world to prepare for. By the time ‘real fighters’ reach the cage very few are operating at 100% both mentally and physically. The reason I say ‘real’ fighters is that there seems to be a bunch of ‘facebook’ fighters these days who as soon as they get a profile picture made by the promoter for their social media they all of a sudden get injured or can’t make the date or the dog ate their homework.

Last year we actually received a Dr’s note saying that little Johnny, name changed to preserve his dignity, was unable to do any physical exercise this week (it was fight week) due to stress at work. Let’s put poor, stressed out Johnny alongside a young man by the name of Arik Hassett. Arik is 16 years old, he turned up to weigh ins and made weight like a pro. Arik is in year 12 at high school. Arik arrived home from weigh in’s and found his father had passed away. There is not a more legitimate reason to pull out from a fight than that. Even after advice from his coach, Kerry Dunne, that he should pull out Arik made the call he wanted to fight. Fight he did, winning by D’arce choke after 90 seconds of the first round. 

Watch Arik's fight VIDEO HERE

When you sign up to fight you are making a commitment to numerous people I will list them and explain why below. I will also explain the negative affect your pullout has on that person. (Obviously if you have a legitimate reason to pull out this doesn’t apply to you)

  1. Your coach/gym- If your coach nominates you for a fight it should be an honor. You represent him/her and the gym. If you pull out it reflects badly on your team.
  2. Your opponent- When you sign up for a fight you obviously have someone who will be stood opposite you, wouldn’t be much of a fight otherwise. This person is going through a hard time in preparation just like you, they are depriving themselves of things just like you, they are missing out on spending time with loved ones/kids just like you, they are spending money on training, healthy eating, physio etc. just like you. They are the main one to suffer when you pull out.
  3. The promotion- When you agree to fight the promotion spends money on you, invests in marketing you, may book flights for you or your opponent, book accommodation, airport transfers etc. Spends time (a commodity promoters value very highly) When you pull out all this is wasted, money, time, effort.

I must stress again that a good promoter or coach would never encourage you to fight if you have a genuine issue. Fighter safety is the number one concern and takes absolute precedence over all decisions. That being said, do not enter into fight agreements lightly, it is a major commitment and many people are investing in you to make this happen. Pullouts happen at every level and will continue to happen as guys push the boundaries to get ready for increasingly improving levels of competition. Some responsibility lies with coaches to ensure training is managed in a way that fighters make it to the fight. It is also widely accepted in MMA that you will not be 100% when you face your opponent in the cage, few fighters make it through a training camp without niggles and minor injuries.

Ben Vickers

CEO Eternal MMA
Follow Eternal MMA on insta @eternalmma
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