Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Brock Lesnar vs Captain America: Spectacle or Sport?

Can the juggernaut known as Brock defeat 2-Time UFC Heavyweight Champion Couture?

From MMA to spectacle may be the first thought for those not too familiar with the UFC's history. It was only a few years ago that the UFC made a concentrated effort to turn the spectacle that was pitting discipline versus discipline into a neo-fighting sport that showcased the best athletes with cross-discipline in a variety of disciplines.

Enter former WWE Heavyweight champion turned 2-1 MMA fighter, and yes, now a heavyweight contender. Now, in the days of no holds barred MMA, this was the type of match-up that would probably feature a man wrestling an alligator on the undercard. But give Brock credit: He's former NCAA wrestling champion who apparently didn't know his own strength in the world of professional wrestling and hurt a few "opponents" while performing choreographed moves.

Luckily for the UFC, he will be facing a man who is symbolic of the progress MMA has endured in the past 10 years. Enter Randy "The Natural" Couture, or as UFC commentator Joe Rogan refers to him Captain America (Couture was a former sergeant in the U.S. Army), MMA's version of boxing's Bernard Hopkins, or George Foreman (or even the great Archie Moore). A 40+ year-old (actually, 45) facing fighters much younger and bigger foes than him.

Fighting and beating behemoths in the cage is no new task for the ever aging Couture

But the difference is that Lesnar will be a facing a Couture who has been off for more than a tear and lost a legal battle that took away the fight he wanted most against pure winner Fedor Emelianenko. How deflated Couture is following a defeat to the UFC remains to be seen. His exile was a forced one due to legal obligations, a plague which has affected many a boxer and fans for years.

Lesnar, on the other hand,is amped about the opportunity and plans to learn from his mistake against Frank Mir, and continue the momentum he made with a dominating win over the always game Heath Herring. Lesnar's acceleration to the top of the UFC mountain is purely financial. A financial gain for the UFC brass. How else could you explain a title shot for a fighter with a 2-1 MMA record, and 1-1 in the UFC, with his lone win against a top 15 heavyweight, at best. You'd think Don King was the promoter.

Nevertheless, it remains an intriguing match up between an aging, inactive champion against a young beast who looks to devour his competition. Brock isn't just a mass of muscle akin to a comic book hero or villain. He is very agile and quick on his feet as evident on the video below. Whether or not his muscles will receive the amount of oxygen needed remains to be seen, if needed at all.

Couture has already shown his fabric in the cage. He has won by submission and punches and has lost the same way. Lesnar has only been submitted once in a fight he was winning. Neither fighter look like a KO puncher but Couture seems to have the better hands if the fight were to remain on the feet, which Lesnar will make sure it does not. When Lesnar dropped Herring with a punch in the opening seconds of the first round, he immediately ran across the octagon and dived in to tackle his opponent.

But will taking Couture to the ground be in Lesnar's best interest? Many, including Lesnar believe so. Of course, so did Gabriel Gonzaga, a big, strong jiu-jitsu expert who succumbed to Randy's wrestling skills and improved striking skills.

The guess here is that Lesnar will bolt out of his corner and immediately impose his 250+ lb. weight advaantage on the not so diminutive Couture, possibly even taking him down. If Lesnar chooses to fight on his feet, Couture will set the tempo and take it to the ground when he want to. Once on the round, look for Lesnar to drop elbows, forearms, punches, and the kitchen sink at Couture. Look for Couture to smother most of the strikes and look to submit Lesnar. Also, look for Couture to reverse the position, gain the dominant mount, and rain down punches the like of Lesnar has not had to endure.

Unless Brock's "brockness," as coined by another writer, gets the better of the battle-worn Couture, look for the current champion to remain just that by a 3-round submission win. But surely, Father Time must catch up to Couture as it already has with Roy Jones Jr. It is doubtful it will come in the form of Lesnar.


  1. Hopefully Couture will pull out a win.

  2. Informal sparring no uncertainty serves to warm the body for the up and coming workout. Personalised Boxer short


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